Montreal

Voters warned of fraudulent text messages promising payment for supporting CAQ

Elections Quebec is warning residents of a possible phishing scam that went out by text message to phones across the province earlier this month.

Elections Quebec first alerted police on Nov. 10 to the possible phishing scam

The French-language text has grammatical errors and a link to a site resembling that of the Coalition Avenir Québec. (Radio-Canada)

Élections Québec is warning residents of a possible phishing scam that went out by text message to phones across the province earlier this month.

The French-language text message, complete with grammatical errors, thanks people for participating in Quebec's general election and offers financial compensation on behalf of the Coalition Avenir Québec, the winning party.

Those who receive the text are welcomed to click on a website link to collect their compensation by deposit. The website's address resembles that of the CAQ's, but it is not operated by the political party.

Élections Québec, which oversees elections in the province, became aware of the scam on Nov. 10 and contacted provincial police.

Spokesperson Julie Saint-Arnaud told Radio-Canada that, after contacting authorities, the next step was to inform the public.

It used social media messages and a black banner posted to the top of its website to remind citizens that under no circumstances does it offer payment for voting.

As for the Sûreté du Québec, Lt. Hugo Fournier said the complaint is currently being analyzed to determine "whether there are grounds to investigate."

Recalling a similar message circulated during the lead up to the election, CAQ executive director Brigitte Legault said and the party acted as soon as it learned about the situation — putting out its own alert on social media on Nov. 10.

With files from Radio-Canada

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