March is Fraud Prevention Month
Throughout the year Kingston Police receive numerous complaints regarding suspicious door to door sales persons, phone calls and emails offering various products and services. For Fraud Prevention Month Kingston Police is partnering with Utilities Kingston to help combat these types of frauds through education and information.
Citizens should be aware that as of March 1st many of these products and services can no longer be offered or sold at your home unless you initiate the transaction. Read about these new rules and learn which products and services are covered at Ontario.ca. If someone comes to your door to sell these products and services on or after March 1, don’t be afraid to shut the door and call Consumer Protection Ontario at 1-800-889-9768.
Here are some useful tips to help Kingston residents and businesses learn how to recognize, reject and report fraud:
- Be extra cautious about any unsolicited calls, emails or mailings.
- A door-to-door salesperson may suggest they are working with your utility company. Know that Utilities Kingston and Kingston Hydro do not go door-to-door for sales purposes.
- You may receive phone calls from scammers claiming to be from your utility company and threatening to disconnect your utility service if you do not immediately provide payment. Utilities Kingston does not place outbound calls to collect payments.
- Certain products and services may no longer be offered or sold at the door as of March 1, 2018. Learn about new rules from Ontario https://www.ontario.ca/page/door-door-sales-and-home-service-contracts#Rules
- Don’t be afraid to hang up the phone, delete the email or close your Internet connection.
- Don’t purchase a product or service without carefully checking out the product, service and company.
- Don’t disclose personal information about your finances, bank accounts, credit cards, utility bill, social insurance and driver’s license numbers to any business that can’t prove it is legitimate.
- At the door, always make sure you get a business card and look at the salesperson’s ID badge first. Ask to see their City-issued license to sell door-to-door in the City of Kingston.
- Remember, you have the right to ask sales people to leave your property.
- Report the incident to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre at 1-888-495-8501. This agency collects information on fraud and works closely with police to solve these crimes.
- If you receive a suspicious phone call or visit at your door from someone claiming to represent Utilities Kingston, hang up and call Utilities Kingston at 613-546-0000. They have customer service representative available Monday to Friday from 8 AM to 5 PM by calling.
- If people refuse to leave your property or you become a victim of fraud through monetary loss, call Kingston Police at 613-549-4660.
Get involved with the conversation online by tweeting to:
@kingstonpolice and @utilitieskngstn using the hashtag #FPM2018.
Fraud Prevention Month is spearheaded by the Competition Bureau.