Scam warning: taxi scheme

Friday, June 7, 2024

Beware of the “taxi scam” 

In the past week, four victims have fallen prey to what is known as the 'taxi scam.' Here’s how it works: 

  • Someone pretending to be a taxi passenger approaches you and claims that the driver won’t accept a debit card as payment for their ride. 
  • The supposed passenger asks you to give the driver your own card, promising to give you cash in return. 
  • The supposed driver, who is also a scammer, steals your card after you’ve typed in your PIN, and hands back a fake card. 
  • One recent victim from the Ezra Avenue area in Waterloo lost almost $1,000 from their bank account. 

Tips to keep yourself safe 

To protect yourself from this kind of scam, the Waterloo Regional Police have shared the following tips: 

  • Do not leave your debit or credit card unattended inside a point-of-sale terminal. 
  • Be aware of taxi numbers and company names when using their services. 
  • If there is an error code or the debit machine is not functioning, always remove your debit card before returning the machine for assistance. 
  • Do not make payments for an unknown person using your personal card in exchange for cash. 
  • Inspect your card after each transaction and ensure it is your card. 
  • Shield the keypad when entering your PIN. 
  • Use contactless payment options, such as tap to pay, whenever possible, because no PIN is required for contactless payments. 

What to do if you are a victim: 

It is important to note that reporting a crime (whether it be the taxi scam or phone or cyber one) will not impact on your academic standing at the University of Waterloo or your Canadian visa

  1. Contact your bank: Immediately contact your bank to block the card and report the fraudulent transaction. 
  2. Contact Waterloo Regional Police Services’ non-emergency line (519-570-9777) or online portal to file a report about the fraud. This can be useful in the investigation process. 
  3. Contact our International Student Supports Specialist for additional support and resources. 

Please share this information with your friends and peers to ensure everyone is aware and prepared. 

  1. 2024 (14)
    1. June (2)
    2. May (1)
    3. April (2)
    4. March (4)
    5. February (2)
    6. January (3)
  2. 2023 (21)
    1. December (2)
    2. October (3)
    3. September (2)
    4. August (1)
    5. July (1)
    6. June (3)
    7. May (3)
    8. April (1)
    9. March (3)
    10. February (1)
    11. January (1)
  3. 2022 (9)
    1. November (1)
    2. September (1)
    3. August (1)
    4. May (1)
    5. April (1)
    6. March (2)
    7. February (1)
    8. January (1)
  4. 2021 (37)
  5. 2020 (2)