New Jersey seniors: don’t fall prey to “Grandparent scam”

June 11th, 2013 No Comments

In the news recently have been the continuing reports of a popular “grandparent scam” among criminals who prey on seniors; this is important to NJ elder care workers to note as well. A New Jersey couple was recently featured in a CNN article; they lost $7000 to a scammer. The scenario usually goes something like this: the criminal calls a senior and pretends to be a grandchild. The criminal, acting as the grandchild, frantically tells the family member that he’s in trouble (has been involved in a car accident, has been jailed or detained in a foreign country, or robbed) and needs money wired to him ASAP. The criminal will then tell the senior not to tell the grandchild’s parent. In a panic situation, the grandparent may immediately react, wanting desperately to help the grandchild and will wire money to the “grandchild” criminal. If that weren’t enough, the criminal might even call back for even more money, posing as a lawyer, doctor, administrator, or bondsmen.

Tips to avoid the “grandparent scam”:

  • Be wary of people calling for cash unexpectedly
  • Never wire money before verifying
  • Create a code word within family members to give in case of an emergency
  • Criminals search social media for clues, so limit personal information

Read the CNN story: Read why older people might be more trusting.

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