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Norfolk resident defrauded of $9.1k by scammer possibly using AI technology

As artificial intelligence technology advances, cybersecurity experts warn it’s getting easier to make convincing ads for online scams as eerily realistic-looking deepfake videos of news anchors and celebrities rapidly spread online.  (Pexels) As artificial intelligence technology advances, cybersecurity experts warn it’s getting easier to make convincing ads for online scams as eerily realistic-looking deepfake videos of news anchors and celebrities rapidly spread online. (Pexels)
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Police say fraudsters may now be using AI technology to mimic loved ones after a Norfolk County resident lost $9,150 after being deceived by an emergency scam.

At around 6:45 p.m. Monday, Norfolk County Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) investigated a fraud at an address in Norfolk County.

Police say a victim received a phone call from someone posing as a family member claiming to be in custody following a collision and urgently needed $9,150 in bail money.

The victim was instructed to go to an address in Norfolk County to hand over the money to a person claiming to be a bail bondmen.

After the transaction, the victim contacted their family member who confirmed they had not been involved in a collision, police say.

The victim, realizing they had been scammed, contacted police.

“In Canada, bail bondsmen do not exist. Police believe the fraudster may have exploited artificial intelligence (AI) voice-changing technology to deceive the victim. Members of the public are urged to verify the identity of any caller requesting money, especially in urgent or unusual circumstances,” police said in a media release.

Police are urging residents to remain vigilant and report similar incidents to police immediately.

If you experience a fraudulent call, text, or email, or if you've fallen victim to fraud, report the incident to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre at 1-888-495-8501 or visit https://www.antifraudcentre-centreantifraude.ca/.

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