Police say that since September 21, OPS has received several complaints concerning people being defrauded after affording assistance in paying with their personal credit or bank card for a taxi fare.
In all incidents, a suspect approaches the victim in a shopping or strip mall parking lot asking them to pay for their cab fare explaining that the driver doesn’t accept cash because of COVID regulations, and only takes credit or debit.
If the victim accepts, he is then brought to the nearby taxicab to complete the transaction using their own credit or debit card.
The suspect then pays the victim with cash for the transaction.
When the transaction is completed, the driver switches the victim’s credit or debit card for a false one and the PIN is obtained in a stealthy manner.
The victim’s card is then used to complete fraudulent transactions.
In all reported incidents, a fake BlueLine taxi vehicle was used.
The Organization Fraud Unit investigation has confirmed that a BlueLine sign and licence plate are being used fraudulently.
Police are telling the public to do the following if faced with a similar situation:
- Don’t accept to pay with your debit or credit card for someone else’s transaction even if you are offered money in return, equivalent or more than the original transaction about;
- When making purchases, protect your PIN;
- Choose a PIN that is not easy to guess — avoid birthdays and phone numbers, etc.;
- Keep a close watch on your incoming bank and credit card statements.
Reports of fraud can be made by calling the OPH at 613-236-1222 ext. 7300 or on the OPS website.
BlueLine Taxi Ottawa is out with a warning about a cab operating illegally in the city.
The company said on Twitter that the vehicle is using a BlueLine sign with 121 on the top, but they say it is not an authorized taxi.
BlueLine also said driver is also defrauding customers by asking for a credit card payment and then swapping the card and handing back a fake one.
**ALERT**RETWEET— BlueLine Taxi Ottawa (@BlueLineTaxiOtt) September 23, 2021
A fraudulent taxi is operating in Ottawa using a Blue Line sign with 121 on the top. This is not an authorized taxi! This vehicle is defrauding customers by asking for the CC pymt & swapping the CC without you being aware. If seen report to the @OttawaPolice pic.twitter.com/e9Xa3EzSuM
The Ottawa Police Service (OPS) is aware of the incident but would not confirm to CityNews if they've received any complaints of fraud.