A White Rock man is advising residents to be wary of callers purporting to be from Visa who ask for banking information. (File photo)

White Rock man warns of credit-card phone scam

Bruce Alexander says callers claim to be verifying Visa charges

A White Rock man is cautioning residents after fielding two phone calls within 24 hours that attempted to have him approve charges to his credit card that he never made.

“They identify themselves as Visa credit card calling,” Bruce Alexander told Peace Arch News, explaining that initially, a recorded voice asked him to press “1” to approve the charges – one of which was for $1,000 – or “2” to dispute them.

“So I pressed two and spoke to somebody,” Alexander said.

The woman on the other end of the line took his credit card number, but Alexander said he wasn’t concerned until, “in the next breath, she said, ‘and I need to have your bank account number.’”

The woman “immediately hung up” when Alexander wouldn’t comply, he said.

He then contacted Visa – who told him his call wasn’t the first they’d fielded about the issue – and cancelled his credit card.

“It sounded so convincing from the message that they first gave me,” Alexander said.

“I just feel the public needs to be notified.”

Const. Chantal Sears said the scam is not a new one – there are “so many like this, I can’t keep up,” she told PAN Thursday.

“However, I haven’t heard of anyone locally having sent money recently.”

READ MORE: Surrey resident falls victim to $18,000 CRA, Bitcoin scam

Alexander said he reported his Nov. 28 and 29 experiences to the Canadian anti-fraud centre, and hasn’t received any concerning calls since.

Still, he had planned to share a cautionary message with his United Churches of Langley congregation, noting that while many people are familiar with the CRA scam – in which a caller threatens arrest for non-payment of a tax bill – he doesn’t believe that’s the case with the Visa scam.

“I wanted to alert them to it.”

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