Scammers threaten to cut their victims’ electricity unless they get paid in Bitcoin
Customers of Toronto Hydro, one of the country’s largest electricity utilities, are continually being attacked by phishing calls. The scammers threaten to cut off the electricity at the victims’ homes. If not for this to happen, the victims have to pay them in Bitcoin.
Threatens to cut off electricity if you don’t pay the ransom in Bitcoin
Toronto Hydro warns its customers that they will never disconnect the power of any home or organization. If they are forced to do so, they will first contact the customer through multiple channels. And these cases rarely happen unless someone forgets … pay their electricity bills.
A Toronto Hydro spokesman said:
“Over the past few months, we have reminded Toronto hydrogen customers to be cautious of sophisticated scams targeting both businesses and residential customers.”
The holidays are primetime for fraudsters looking to scam our customers, especially leading into weekends. We’re working with @alectranews, @HydroOne and @hydroottawa to help our customers identify and report fraud.
Learn how to protect yourself: https://t.co/dHK0all7Ny pic.twitter.com/UDwPT1GkhX
— Toronto Hydro (@TorontoHydro) December 12, 2019
Moreover, the company insists they do not accept Bitcoin payments. Even though e-payments are easy to track, it’s often impossible to identify who is behind them. This makes cryptocurrencies particularly attractive to criminals. And that is why the cryptocurrency market cannot receive sympathy from many government agencies.
And especially, as soon as you have an invoice but have not yet paid it, you will not receive any threat from the company. Therefore, a thorough examination of such information is always meaningful. Especially during the holiday season when these scams are on the rise.
The spokesperson continued to say:
“We certainly see an increase leading to the holiday season and so do we, historically seeing an increase leading to a long weekend,”
The Bitcoin scammers in Canada are getting more and more
However, getting a fake call from Toronto Hydro may not be the worst thing that can happen to people appearing in the scams of Canadian scammers. The Provincial Police of Ontario (OPP) recently sounded a warning bell about a group of blackmailers sending bomb threats to their victims and demanding payment of Bitcoin.
Correctly, a resident of Seaforth (Southern Ontario, Canada) has received such a threat recently.
The content of the email is as follows:
“At 48 hours ago, we placed three pocket-sized explosive devices around you in three different places. To hope you can still live, click on the link in this email and follow the directions.”
The letter was sent to the victim’s husband and looked convincing. However, after contacting the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP), it turned out this bizarre email was just a scam.
OPP warns that such criminals let the victim off guard and send the necessary funds. This fraud is not new. However, as of recently, fraudsters prefer to request payment in Bitcoin in Canada is on the rise. Perhaps using cryptocurrency will make it more challenging to track them.
The threat of Bitcoin ransom comes in all shapes and sizes. There are even cryptocurrency ransomware software that can encrypt and permanently control your computer.
The Canadian Fraud Protection Center (CAFC) calls on potential victims not to send money to criminals. Especially those who want to pay with the help of gift cards or Bitcoin.
Earlier this year, Canadian police were also concerned about scammers installing fake Bitcoin ATMs to transfer victims’ money to the wrong address.
The Winnipeg Police Service Financial Crime Unit has identified a recent scam in Winnipeg involving Bitcoin ATMs | Source: Manitobapost
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