align=”left” style=”margin-right: 5px;”Seniors Citizens in Florida are the latest to fall victim to the scam dubbed the “Grandparent Scam.” An article in the South Florida Sun-Sentinel details how grandparents are scammed when they first receive a phone call from someone pretending to be their grandchild.
The fake grandchild then informs the grandparent that they are in legal trouble and need money to get bailed out of jail. Later, they give detailed instructions on how to wire money and where the money should be wired. Usually the scammers will use a bank account in another country as the place to wire the money to hide their money trail.
Seniors should not be fooled if they seem to know a lot about your grandchild and your family history. With the boom of social networking websites, many family secrets that you thought were private can end up in the personal history of a grandchild. Look for them to request you keep the transfer confidential as this could tip you off that the call is a scam. Also, it is probably in the grandchild’s best interest to notify their parent of the call because they have the ability to verify their child’s legal trouble.
This is not the first scam to target the elderly, nor will it be the last. Many scams involve family members because they are in a position of trust with the senior. If you believe you have fallen victim to a scam, do not be embarrassed to report these con artists to family members or proper authorities including the Department of Children and Families Elder Abuse Hot Line at 1-800-962-2873.