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Why is Telus selling services to international criminals?

Helpful Neighbour

Repeated early-morning VISA scam calls from boiler rooms in India.


This morning, I pushed the botton and spoke with "Sam". I gave him my usual advice about his pencil and what to do with it.


One automated message today gave a number for call-backs: 519-398-1988.


I called it from a different number. "Eric" answered, and I asked him whether "Sam" was comfortable.


I redialed that number and was informed that it is no longer in service.


I dialed that number from the number I had received the initial call on. It rang.


I am now receiving repeated calls from the boiler room, like a hive of angry bees I have poked. This happens from time to time. (I cannot afford not to answer calls, even from unknown numbers; I work freelance and I have very sick family members in other area codes.)


Information online says this number belongs to Telus:


Visa scammers and their illk are not just annoyances. They are big-time international organized crime, earning huge amounts of money for criminals.


What is Telus doing to stop its services being used for this purpose?


Does Telus have no safeguards in place to identify abuse of its services?


In the past, I have identified numbers being used for the CRA scam and traced them to a smaller Ontario service provider.


I ask Telus the same question I asked them (yes, I have emailed abuse @):  


Your subscribers are using these numbers for extremely high volumes of calls, and switching numbers every few days. Why are there no mechanisms in place to detect and deter these criminals?


If anybody here can tell me, you are welcome to do so!


Helpful Neighbour

Oops, I can't edit. Just to head off the inevitable (it took me multiple exchanges to get the other provider in question to see the light re the CRA scam calls), I want to emphasize:


The number in question IS NOT being spoofed.


I dialed that number and the call was answered by the same criminals as the ones that called me with the automated VISA scam message five minutes before.


Consider turning on the Call Control feature. I've received zero robo calls since I turned it on.


I'n not sure how any carrier can be assured that a new account isn't going to be used for conducting criminal activity. The best that can be done is to respond to reports after the fact. Did you report it to Telus?


Helpful Neighbour

Heh. Like I said ... I'm with Rogers. No pay-extra features. Actually planning to cancel Rogers this week because I have a "Zoomer" phone for 1/3 the price. It will have features. I'll cross my fingers.


On the main point, I don't doubt at all that telecoms could have mechanisms for detecting abuse. The firearms registry can flag suspicious multiple purposes, so surely...


I do think that simply verifying subscribers' identity and location might be a start!


I did say I had contacted Telus via abuse @ -- i.e. [email protected]. If I receive a reply, I will report it here.




Helpful Neighbour

Aargh -- no edit feature?!


The firearms registry can flag multiple suspicious purchases, not purposes.


Surely an actual IT company can do at least as well.

"Heh. Like I said ... I'm with Rogers."

I see no reference to you being with Rogers in your initial post. Regardless, the Telus Call Control feature is free for both land lines and mobile.


"I did say I had contacted Telus via abuse @ -- i.e. [email protected]."

Yes, I saw that in your initial post but [email protected] is for email scams. There is a different contact for reporting phone scams.


We used to be able to edit posts but spammers were using it to avoid detection so it was turned off.

Helpful Neighbour

My apologies. I mentioned Rogers in another thread:

I guess by "Regardless", you mean for Telus customers.


There is no email contact given for phone scams at the page in question (which I was already familiar with):


I cannot call *611 from a TELUS handset, and I have no desire to get into a telephone conversation with any call centre employee over this issue. So I guess I'll just wait for Telus's response to my email.

Yeah "regardless" was off on a tangent.

You said "No pay-extra features" so I wanted to make it clear to people reading the thread that Call Control was free.

The datacore database you reference is unreliable.

I looked my TELUS number and it came up as Rogers.

Helpful Neighbour

(Ah yes, I have seen the edit function misused for that purpose elsewhere.)


I wouldn't put anything past Rogers! But probably also Telus. Devil and deep blue sea, fire and frying pan, has been my experience with telecom providers.


My number comes up as Rogers. So does my Zoomer phone, since Zoomer uses Rogers.


My mum's Rogers phone comes up as Bell -- which it originally was. I don't suppose yours used to be Rogers? 😉 My sister's Telus phone comes up as Telus ...


This question is probably exhausted now. Thanks, all. If I do receive a reply from Telus, I will report.

Helpful Neighbour

Here we go, the source I usually try to find:

519-398-8088 is a Landline phone number operated by TELUS Integrated Communications and is located in the city of Leamington in ON. 519-398-8088 has been searched 157 times on


So to summarize:

- owned by Telus

- not spoofed


and awaiting reply from Telus. Until then, thanks!

Helpful Neighbour

aaaargh. Google gave me the wrong number.

519-398-1988 is a Landline phone number operated by TELUS Integrated Communications and is located in the city of Leamington in ON.


No info of number of searches. But: Telus.


I hope I'm finished posting and correcting now!

Telus does not provide landline service in Ontario, so I'm not sure how that can be correct.

Helpful Neighbour

loosemeat, you were speaking to me? Maybe you would read my posts in this thread.


I wish everyone would do that, and note that I am not looking for any further information/advice/lectures here.


Thank you.

Community Power User
Community Power User

Number are spoofed constantly, VOIP numbers make it even easier to grab a pool of numbers (you've never needed "verification" just a name, email address, mailing address and payment info). I can think of 10 VOIP providers just off the top of my head.


Phone scams have been going on for decades, it's the consumer that has to educate themselves. Telcos try their best to keep up in the game of wack a mole. Most scams are overseas where police prosecution is next to nil, and falls solely on our government working with other countries to prosecute these people.

Helpful Neighbour
Um ... omg. I really really made it really really clear that this number IS NOT spoofed. When you can dial a number and get an answer from the same caller, that number is not spoofed. I've had my number spoofed and got the confused call-back to show for it. I've also called back a spoofed number and given the poor owner of the number a piece of my mind -- back in the days before we were aware of number-spoofing. I called this number back and got the scammer. G'head. Try it. Let me know whether the person who answers is Sean, Sam or Eric. (There are a surprising number of "Seans" in India, I've found.) I really really dislike being treated like a fool who needs lecturing, whether it's about how things work or about how I should do things. I am very aware of the fact that the Canadian government and the home governments of the criminals are doing nothing to stop this phenomenon. I am not at all persuaded that telecoms have no way of detecting and/or preventing the use of their services for criminal purposes. And you have certainly not persuaded me of that.


You should try "Call Control", with Telus.  I like it very much, as you can control who gets thru to you or not, by number.

Helpful Neighbour
(a) Yes. I'm not with Telus, and do not have that feature at present. (b) I do have call blocking on my cell phone. These particular criminals (VISA fraud fraud) tend to use different numbers for every call. Yesterday's to my land line came from 647 and 519. Today's to my cell phone came from 226.

Community Power User
Community Power User

You will need to see if your provider offers a similar service to Telus' Call Control. If they don't then you'll have to make a choice. The scammers are calling from overseas using spoofed numbers. And yes the scammers do spoof caller ID so that they display numbers that actually exist but have no connection to them. Call blocking on your phone is useless if they simply change numbers and get through again. 


A lot of scammers use VoIP services like TextNow that will give them a Canadian phone number and the ability to receive calls on it as well. Phone numbers are portable / transferrable these days so a number that was associated with one carrier can easily be changed to another. Telus very well may not even own the phone number any longer, if they ever did. YellowPages isn't an accurate resource in determining the ownership of a phone number.  datacorelookup is also not accurate in the majority of phone numbers I tried looking up. They had the provider wrong in so many cases and in almost all cases they had the usage type wrong as well. I know a number of people using Shaw, Rogers or Bell for phone service and the websites all list those numbers as Telus. Neither website even indicates where they are getting the provider information from or how recently they got it.

If you find a post useful, please give the author a "Like" or mark as an accepted solution if it solves your trouble. 🙂

Community Power User
Community Power User

Additionally, my cell number was originally with Rogers but it was changed to Telus a decade ago and both of those sites still show it as a Rogers phone number.

If you find a post useful, please give the author a "Like" or mark as an accepted solution if it solves your trouble. 🙂

Helpful Neighbour

Nighthawk, re switch from Rogers to Telus and info on line: I'm sure you noted that this was exactly what I said earlier in the thread about Telus numbers showing on line as Rogers numbers.


For the rest, I think I did ask that I not be lectured orinstsructed in things I already know. Can we be done now?


I should have known that the urge to defend giant corporations against those who dare to question their business practices is something that some people are unable to resist.