Canadian Police Issue Warning Over Bitcoin Tax Scam

Police in York, Canada, have warned of a tax scam after over 40 people were convinced to send money via bitcoin ATMs.

AccessTimeIconNov 9, 2017 at 10:00 a.m. UTC
Updated Sep 13, 2021 at 7:08 a.m. UTC
10 Years of Decentralizing the Future
May 29-31, 2024 - Austin, TexasThe biggest and most established global hub for everything crypto, blockchain and Web3.Register Now

Police in Canada have issued a warning over a bitcoin tax scam after more than 40 York region residents fell victim to fraudsters.

According to a report by CBC News, York Regional Police said that victims lost as much as 340,000 Canadian dollars (US$267,000) through the scam.

The fraudsters, who identified themselves as employees of the Canada Revenue Agency, threatened the victims with arrest for unpaid taxes if they did not send funds using bitcoin ATMs.

York police's Det. Const. Rob Vingerhoets said the bitcoin ATMs are "legitimate" and that tracking down the fraudsters or recovering lost money may be possible.

According to police force, there has been an increase in reports of such scammers in recent months. Public awareness is the only way to combat such scams in the future, Vingerhoets said, adding, "Our main strategy, ... [is] to stop people from becoming victims in the first place."

York police have placed flyers near bitcoin ATMs to alert the public about potential scams, the report adds.

The news comes soon after Durham Regional Police Service in Ontario issued a warning to the public about fraudulent investment schemes involving bitcoin.

Bitcoin and ATM receipt image via Shutterstock


Please note that our privacy policy, terms of use, cookies, and do not sell my personal information has been updated.

CoinDesk is an award-winning media outlet that covers the cryptocurrency industry. Its journalists abide by a strict set of editorial policies. In November 2023, CoinDesk was acquired by the Bullish group, owner of Bullish, a regulated, digital assets exchange. The Bullish group is majority-owned by; both companies have interests in a variety of blockchain and digital asset businesses and significant holdings of digital assets, including bitcoin. CoinDesk operates as an independent subsidiary with an editorial committee to protect journalistic independence. CoinDesk employees, including journalists, may receive options in the Bullish group as part of their compensation.

Learn more about Consensus 2024, CoinDesk's longest-running and most influential event that brings together all sides of crypto, blockchain and Web3. Head to to register and buy your pass now.