News Releases

Reader's Digest Scam Alert

April 10, 2017

The North Bay Police Service alerts the public to a recent report of a “Reader’s Digest” scam involving a local woman who fell victim.

On Thursday, April 6th, 2017, a fraudster contacted a woman in her 80s at her North Bay residence by telephone. After congratulating her for winning a large cash prize from Reader’s Digest, the unknown man proceeded to tell her that she must first pay a tax in order to claim her prize. She was instructed to transfer money to an overseas Western Union account, which she did, not knowing at the time that this was a scam.

Protect yourself against lottery, sweepstakes and contest scams

Many Canadians are lured by the excitement of a surprise win and find themselves sending huge amounts of money to claim fake prizes.

Advice on how to avoid these scams:

  • Ask yourself: “Did I enter this contest?” You cannot win money or a prize in a contest unless you have entered it yourself, or someone else has entered it on your behalf.
  • Know that legitimate lotteries do not require you to pay a fee or tax to collect your winnings.
  • Never send money or provide banking, credit card or personal information to anybody you don’t know and trust.

Are you a victim of fraud?

If you’ve sent money or financial information to a suspected fraudster, contact your bank immediately and report the fraud to police.

Were you the target of a scam but did not fall victim?

Help the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre by reporting scams if you have been targeted. The Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre is the central agency in Canada that collects information and criminal intelligence on such matters as telemarketing fraud, advance fee fraud, Internet fraud and identification theft complaints. Its primary goal is crime prevention through education and awareness, disruption of criminal activities, dissemination of intelligence, support to law enforcement and strengthening partnerships between the private and public sectors. For more information, visit the Canadian Anti-Fraud Cetnre at or call 1-888-495-8501.