An investigation is underway on Manitoulin Island after the Wikwemikong Tribal Police Service was alerted to text messages that contained images of dead bodies and body parts.
The Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre has issued an alert for a violent text message extortion scam, in which violence or harm is threatened unless money is paid, says a release issued by Ontario Provincial Police (OPP).
Full text of the OPP release follows:
WIKWEMIKONG - On Jan. 15, 2022 at approximately 2:45 p.m., Wikwemikong Tribal Police Service (WTPS) responded to a complaint of violent text messages. The messages included images of dead bodies and body parts.
The investigation is on-going with the assistance of the Manitoulin Detachment Crime Unit of the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP).
The OPP wants the public to be aware that the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre has issued an alert for a violent text message extortion scam. The message threatens that if payment is not sent, you and your family may be targeted and harmed. Like other extortion scams, fraudsters are attempting to scare victims into sending funds.
Warning signs and how to protect yourself:
• If you receive a violent message, report it to the OPP immediately.
• Remember that fraudsters use high-pressure intimidation tactics to try to steal your money.
• Be wary of any unsolicited message, including those that are threatening or accuse you of owing money for a service you never had or planned to have.
• Do not reply to threatening messages.
• Do not send money under pressure.
If you think you or someone you know has been a victim of fraud, please contact the OPP at 1-888-310-1122 or your nearest police authority and the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre at 1-888-495-8501 or report online.