A common version is the “grandparent scam,” where the con artist contacts a grandparent claiming to be their grandchild and asking for money. The plea is so persuasive that the grandparent wires money to the scammer, only to find out later their family member was safe and sound all along. This scam can also work in reverse, where the “grandparent” calls their grandchild pleading for help.
The Good News is there is you can be proactive to avoid being a victim. Remember the following and apply accordingly.
- Resist the urge to act immediately, no matter how dramatic the story is. Check out the story with other family and friends, but hang up or close the message and call your loved one directly. Don’t call the phone number provided by the caller or caller ID. Ask questions that would be hard for an impostor to answer correctly.
- Know what your family members are sharing online. You may not have control over your family’s social media accounts, but familiarize yourself with what they are sharing online.
- Don’t wire any money if there is any doubt about the call. If a person does wire money and later realizes it is a fraud, the police need to be alerted.
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