The Alberta RCMP Federal Serious & Organized Crime Branch is warning the public of “Grandparent” or “Grandchild” scams.
These fraudulent scams are circulating throughout Alberta and often involve a phone call being placed to the victim claiming their grandchild is in trouble with the courts or law enforcement.
The scammer will ask for a payment in cash to help the grandchild.
The scammers will often pretend to be police or a judge and caution the victims not to tell anyone about the transaction.
Exclusively in March alone, Alberta RCMP has received five complaints of this type of scam with a total loss of over $100,000 to the victims. RCMP says there is a concern for the amount of money being lost but a bigger concern for the couriers showing up in person to collect the cash.
March marks Fraud Prevention month and Alberta RCMP want to remind residents of Alberta to:
- Never withdraw or send money to anyone you don’t know;
- If the person is saying a family member is in trouble, confirm with that family member first prior to taking any action;
- If the person claims to be police or a judge, call that police service or court house directly to confirm that situation – police and courts will never demand cash be picked up in person or mailed; and
- Never give out personal information over the phone or online to someone you don’t know—the police or courts will not ask for personal information over the phone.
If anyone has fallen victim to this type of scam or any other scam, RCMP asks you to call your local RCMP or police of jurisdiction.