Police ask the public to be aware of cheque overpayment scam

Kijiji has also notified sellers about fraud attempts using fake cheques

News release – South Simcoe Police

The South Simcoe Police Service is alerting the public to an overpayment scam being reported in our communities. 

Police are investigating multiple incidents of residents being targeted by this scam after posting items for sale on online classified ads such as Kijiji. The typical overpayment scam has a suspect sending a cheque to the seller for higher than the agreed price. Sellers are then asked to return the excess funds. Scammers typically give bogus excuses to explain the overpayment such as shipping costs or an accounting error. In each of our incidents, the cheques the sellers received were confirmed as fraudulent by the bank. Fortunately, the sellers suffered no financial loss and had not shipped the items or returned the supposed overpayment.

Police would like to make residents aware of this scam. You could end up losing not only money, but the item you were selling. Here are some tips to help ensure you don’t become a victim of this fraud:

  • Do not accept cheques for more than the purchase price 
  • Request cash or e-transfer
  • Conduct the transaction in person
  • Do not send money to cover shipping until a deposited cheque has cleared and been approved by the bank

Kijiji has also notified sellers about fraud attempts using fake cheques. Visit the Kijiji website for more information: https://help.kijiji.ca/helpdesk/basics/cheques-as-a-form-of-payment

If you have been targeted by this fraud or have any information regarding the scam contact the South Simcoe Police Service at 705-436-2141, 905-775-3311, or contact Crime Stoppers. 

Banner image – file photo

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