The air is colder, the holiday lights are everywhere, Christmas deals are in full force, it must e that time of year again. Yes, time to scam the elderly in New Jersey out of their life savings by tricking them to kick up a little extra holiday love. People in New Jersey are being warned to speak to their elderly parents, friends, coworkers, and warn them about the latest holiday scam called the Grandparents Scam. Here is a little about how the scam is pulled off.
How the Scam Works
The scam is very clever at the core because it works on tugging at the heart-strings of the elderly. The scammer will call the elderly and pretend to be a grandchild, relying on the person not recognizing the voice on the phone. The person will say they love their grandparent, they are in trouble, and they need the elderly to please keep this a secret from the parents. Since they think they are talking to their favorite grandchild, they try to help out any way they can. Many times the caller will say they are in need of immediate funds to get out of jail, to get home from a foreign country, or to take care of a debt. The caller will try anything to get the elderly to break out that credit card.
New Jersey Grandma Scammed
This week an elderly woman in New Jersey was the target of the “grandparents Scam”, and it cost her over $12,000. The scammer convinced the grandmother that they were under arrest and that she needed to go around town to a few stores and load $12,000 on to different iTunes Gift Cards. The grandmother was then instructed to read off those numbers on the cards. The scammer drained the cards quickly before any report could be filed. The Asbury Park Press reported the story in their newspaper and issued a warning for the elderly on how to protect themselves against this popular scam.
Today, this scam has gotten so effective that Apple Stores are issuing warning to their customers about how the iTunes cards are now only available to pay for goods, not help relatives make bail. Due to the fact the callers are usually from outside the country, prosecution is all but impossible.