Ottawa

City of Ottawa trying to recover $558K lost in fraudulent transaction

The City of Ottawa is working to recover more than half a million dollars it paid out after an "illegal action" was perpetrated against a partner organization.

Staff at the city noticed issues with the payment on Monday

The city is working with the police and its financial institution to recover the money lost in the transaction. (CBC / Radio-Canada)

The City of Ottawa is working to recover more than half a million dollars it paid out after an "illegal action" was perpetrated against a partner organization.

The city's chief financial officer told council that city staff became aware of a possible issue with a $558,000 payment on Monday in a memo sent Thursday afternoon. 

Once staff had confirmed the fraudulent transaction, the memo says it was reported to the city's financial institution, the Ottawa police and the auditor general. 

The city is working with the police and the financial institution to recover the money. Ottawa police told CBC they do not confirm or deny active investigations involving a named organization. 

City staff are also working on a "comprehensive" internal investigation. They have confirmed that no personal information was shared by the City of Ottawa. 

This is not the first time the city has lost a large chunk of money to fraudsters. In 2019, the city lost around $130,000 after the treasurer fell for a scam email. 

The city said as this is an active police investigation, it won't be commenting further. 

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