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Please be aware of an ongoing email-based scam that is affecting UWO employees and students.  A criminal or group of criminals are posing as a doctor or other professional who is in need of a personal assistant.  The emails are well written and very convincing. When a victim reaches out to them, the criminals offer to send an electronic check for the victim to deposit.    They ask for a copy of the deposit slip to “prove” the money was deposited. The criminals then instruct the victim to purchase gift cards or some other easily transferable form of credit.

The criminals then use the bank account numbers and other personal information the victim provided them on the deposit slip to illegally withdraw funds from the victim’s account.  Often times the original check is from another victim and there are insufficient funds in the account, so the victim is also responsible for the funds used to purchase the gift cards.

What can you do to protect yourself?

  • Be suspicious of unsolicited ‘work from home’ offers – the vast majority of them are scams.

  • Do not give your banking information to anyone you don’t trust, and NEVER over email.

  • Never call a 1-900 telephone number for “more information” on job opportunities.

What should I do if I gave the criminals my banking information?

  • Contact your bank.

  • Contact the University Police department.

What should I do if I receive one of these email messages?

  • Simply delete it and do not respond.