As fall begins to take hold, now is a great time to go over a fairly common scam that is used to take advantage of the elderly in various communities across the US. The scam is one that is familiar to you and I, but maybe not so much with some of the older population.

The scam works like this, you get a call and the caller reports to be your oldest granddaughter or grandson, no names, just that information, and they are in trouble with the police and need money. Generally when the caller says this is your oldest grandson, the person on the other side of the call, without thinking will say that person's name, and is immediately followed by the caller saying yes, this is so and so.

Often times the caller will say that it's urgent they get money as they are in trouble with law enforcement and they need to either be bailed out or have to pay a fine so they can leave.

 

Suspects have been calling residents saying that their family members (grandkids/children) are in jail and they are from...

Posted by Rosemount Police Department on Tuesday, October 5, 2021

 

In some cases the scammer on the other end of the phone, like what happened to my grandmother recently, was they googled the number after she answered and started to mention to her nearby banks that she could go to and cash a check or make a withdrawal. Luckily, the scammer in my grandmother's case wasn't very convincing as she called the police immediately after hanging up.

She was nervous though that the scammer would show up at her house, as they knew where she lived. The local police department assured her that the scam caller was likely located outside the US, but if someone she didn't know showed up at her home, to call them back and they would come over ad investigate.
Now is a great time to go over something like this with a loved one, and let them know that the police won't call you and tell you that you have a warrant, or that your social security information is bad. And generally, if your son or daughter is calling you and they are in legal trouble, they would refer you to a bail bondsman, and not ask for a large amount of cash to be delivered.

Know the warning signs of a scam, and remember that if it sounds suspicious or doesn't make sense OR is too good to be true it probably is. Don't be afraid to call local law enforcement with questions, they would be more than happy to help.

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