Police are educating children and young adults on the ways they can prevent their grandparents from becoming victims of phone scams.
These types of scams typically begin when the victim receives a call, usually in the middle of the night. The caller often visits the social media profiles of the victims ahead of time so that they can make the call seem legitimate by providing names, phone numbers and other relevant details.
The caller’s story will change with each victim - they got arrested, they got into an accident, etc. - but the request for money is what’s consistent. Victims are typically asked to wire between $1,000 and $10,000 to somewhere out of the state or country. Wiring money is like handing over a stack of cash: it’s impossible to get it back.
Scammers often pose as grandchildren in order to “play on a grandparent’s unconditional love and their desire to help their loved ones, no matter what the cost,” warn police.
If you feel as though you or a loved one may have been involved in this type of scam, reporting it immediately is essential. Call local law enforcement and the Office of the Attorney General, even you’re contacted by a scammer and don’t send money, police say, adding that knowing how these scams are carried out can help to prevent them as a whole.
Finally, make sure to tell the victim to call the money wiring service they used. Police say this may help to identify the agents who facilitated the scam. If the scam involved a wire transfer to Canada, contact Canadian authorities at the hotline number (888) 495-8501.
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