Child porn scam banks on victims’ disgust

The suspect, who identified himself as Shawn Patrick, told the man that he was an investigator from Cyber Crimes Control Board of Canada

A Duncan man was surprised to learn his personal computer was being used to distribute child pornography all over the Internet.

Except that it wasn’t. It’s just the most recent telephone scam making the rounds.

North Cowichan/Duncan RCMP received a complaint recently while the would-be victim was still on the phone with the suspected scammers.

The suspect, who identified himself as Shawn Patrick, told the man that he was an investigator from Cyber Crimes Control Board of Canada, a body he said works with law enforcement.

Patrick was able to tell the complainant what his IP address was and went on to say that the man’s computer was being used for child porn distribution.

Patrick wanted access to the computer so as to put a stop to it.

“Our complainant knew this was a bad idea but he was then connected to another man who identified himself as Alfred Jones. He gave his address as 269 Laurier Ave., in Ottawa and said his phone number was 613-482-6363,” said a press release issued by the North Cowichan/Duncan RCMP detachment.

“Our complainant knew this sounded pretty hokey and that’s when he put the scammer on hold and called the police.”

Mounties quickly confirmed it was indeed a scam and the man did not hand over control of his computer to the scammer.

“We also informed our complainant that the RCMP conduct their own investigations and we do not contract out to private companies,” said the release, noting if police suspected an individual of possessing or distributing child pornography they wouldn’t phone that person up and ask to access their computer.

“Expect a knock at the door and a warrant in hand,” said the release.

The incident is a definite reminder not to provide personal information to anyone over the phone that you wouldn’t give to a stranger on the street, North Cowichan/Duncan RCMP spokesperson Cpl. Krista Hobday noted.

“The shear ugliness of this type of crime would have us wanting to get it off of our computers as quickly as possible without questioning the caller further and this is the reaction the scammers are hoping for,” Hobday said.