To All Duarte & Associates Clients:
We feel the need to contact you to inform you about a scam that Canadians across the country are falling victim to. There are some unscrupulous individuals who are phoning people and claiming to be from CRA (Canada Revenue Agency) agents. They will tell you that you owe CRA a great deal of money and if you don’t pay that they will issue a warrant for your arrest. You may have heard about this already as it’s been in the news. One senior lady from BC had $8,000.00 stolen. Another from Toronto had around $20,000.00 stolen. I myself have received one of these phone calls.
To prepare you in case you get one of these calls please take note that:
- CRA will very rarely contact you by phone, and never by email, to ask for personal information. They will send you letters in the mail.
- CRA will always call you by name. These scammers often don’t know your name when they first call you. They trick you into giving them information about yourself.
- CRA will never threaten you with jail or losing your home.
- CRA will be professional in their interaction with you. They will not use inappropriate language.
- CRA is always willing to work with you to get your situation straightened out and to work out a payment schedule.
- Sometimes these scammers have managed to find some details about you before they call. Do not take this to mean that it is really CRA calling you. It just means that the scammers are good at what they do and did some research on you before they called.
- Don’t fall for questions such as “Can you confirm your address/phone number/Social Insurance Number?”. Say to them, that “you already have that information on file from previous tax returns. Please repeat it back to me.” If they cannot, hang up.
- If you are in any doubt, please contact CRA or myself to give you the true status of your income tax account.
Friends, please be aware, and be cautious, that you don’t inadvertently give out personal information to others. If you have any concerns about your CRA account please do not hesitate to contact me.