According to a CTV News report, Oakville nurse Sheila O’Reilly has lost nearly $10,000 after falling victim to a new “SIM swapping” scam, which the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) says can empty a victim’s bank accounts. The scam also gives the fraudster access to a person’s social media accounts, calendars, and contacts.
O’Reilly told the publication that she was confused on the evening of Nov. 9 when she tried to use her phone but noticed she had no service. “At first I just thought there was something wrong with my phone,” she said. But after a call to Rogers, she was told that her plan had been cancelled upon her request this afternoon.
“They said someone called into Rogers earlier that day and impersonated me. The number was then ported to Lucky Mobile,” she added, which was something she did not do.
According to CTV News:
After realizing she had been scammed, O’Reilly contacted her credit card company to make sure there was no fraudulent activity.
She said she was shocked when Visa told her that nearly $10,000 in charges had been applied to her credit card that afternoon. One of the charges was from Ticketmaster for $4,000. She was also charged by Lucky Mobile and Uber Eats.
O’Reilly said she contacted Halton Regional Police to file a report but has not yet heard back. Visa told her they will refund the $10,000.
Rogers eventually ported her number back and reactivated her plan. She was hesitant to retain the same number, but Rogers assured her the number was cleared. Her Rogers number was used for her business so losing the number would have resulted in a difficult situation.
Police are warning people not to answer phishing emails or text messages looking to confirm or update your password. If you ever lose your phone, contact your service provider immediately.