“People just have to be diligent, if something is not confirmed by you directly don’t do it,” said Sgt. Darrell Robertson of the Oceanside RCMP in response to reports of a common scam.
Someone reported to The News that they received a strained phone call from someone claiming to be their grandson in prison in Montreal after a car accident and he needed $3,400 for expenses which he would pay back.
The woman wired the money to Western Union and even received a thank you call back, only realizing it hadn’t been her grandson 10 days later when she talked to her real grandson, still in Vancouver where he was supposed to be.
Robertson said scam artists use many different stories and can easily switch to whichever is most likely to work. They prey on the elderly and he points out in this era of the Internet and easy communication, they can be located anywhere in the world.
“These scams are common place in our society now,” he said.
There doesn’t appear to be any recent spike in scam numbers, he said, just constant attempts.
He said the best advice police can give is for people to confirm stories, especially requests for money, from you own end. Don’t call a number back that they give you, look up your bank’s phone number yourself or call your relatives at phone numbers you already have for them.