Regina business owner warns of scam invoices

The owner of a small business in Regina is warning others to be on the lookout for fake invoices arriving by mail.

'I know I never did business with this company,' says Studio S Fashion House owner

This fake invoice was received by the owner of Studio S Fashion House in Regina this week. (Submitted by Sonja Clifton-Remple)

The owner of a small business in Regina is warning others to be on the lookout for fake invoices arriving by mail.

Sonja Clifton-Remple, who owns Studio S Fashion House, got a letter this week containing an invoice from "DirectPages411" in Montreal claiming a bill for $776.99 was overdue.

Right away she knew something was off.  

"I know I never did business with this company," she said.

Clifton-Remple said, at a glance, the document seemed like a legitimate letter, but as she examined it closer, the invoice looked "different." Her business's address was wrong and there was no contact name, phone number or email for the company that sent the invoice. 

When she went online to look up the company, she found multiple warnings about scam invoices for the exact same amount. 

She posted the letter on Facebook Wednesday, warning of the scam.

"I wanted to get it out there before people get taken advantage of," she said.

Clifton-Remple said since then about six people who run small businesses in the city have told her they've received the same letter.

Les Parker, a spokesman with the Regina Police Service, said they're aware of the letter received by Clifton-Remple and said they encourage people to be on top of their billing so they don't get taken in by fake invoices. 

This particular scam has been all over the country, he added. 

He said anyone who receives one of the letters should notify the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre, and anyone who has fallen victim to fraud should contact police.