How scammers are targeting Sask.residents during COVID-19 pandemic
PRINCE ALBERT -- "I received the letter in my home mailbox,” said the CEO of the Better Businesses Bureau (BBB) of Saskatchewan, Karen Smith, referring to a letter claiming to be from a stock analyst and geologist promoting Crestview Exploration Inc. a B.C. gold mining company.
The province’s Financial and Consumer Affairs Authority (FCAA) sent out information to warn the public about this scam and said to exercise extreme caution about the aggressive promotion of Crestview Exploration Inc.
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Residents in B.C., Alberta, Manitoba and Saskatchewan received the letter in the mail. The envelope has no return address and says in bold red letters "CORONAVIRUS AFFECTING MARKETS: READ NOW.” It makes a claim that buying shares in Crestview Exploration today could yield 500% returns and reads, “While long-term shareholders (12+ months) could see gains exceeding 2,400%.”
Crestview issued a statement on April 8 stating that it was not responsible for the letter. Crestview is a legitimate company listed on the Canadian Securities Exchange and the Frankfurt Stock Exchange.
“They're using an investment scam angle to either get I.D. and take your money. Normally even without the COVID-19 going around, we would categorize that as an investment scam,” Smith said.
There’s a number of new scams in play because of the pandemic, Smith said.
The BBB has compiled information on the scams affecting people in Canada associated to COVID-19 on its website.
“With COVID-19 the scammers are just taking advantage of every angle the can to get in front of people and take your money. They know people are sitting at home. They might be working from home like most of us are and when you’re bored you look