Local police warn public not to fall victim to ‘grandparent scam’

From Sarnia to Lambton County, local police agencies are warning the public Monday to not fall victim to something called the “grandparent” scam.

According to the Sarnia Police Service and OPP West Region, the scam works by a scammer pretending to be the victim’s grandchild or a lawyer representing the victim’s grandchild.

Scammers claim they are in police custody and are facing criminal charges, and then ask the victim to transfer them money for legal purposes.

The scam has been reported across other parts of Ontario, and both Sarnia police and OPP West Region said they’ve lately received multiple reports, with OPP writing on Twitter that Lambton County OPP had received numerous calls about the scam on Monday alone.

While people may have never heard of this type of scam before, Sarnia police say it’s not new and “has been around for many years” and that scammers take advantage of people by playing off their fears.

“These scam artists may sound very credible but that’s what they do,” Sarnia police said in a press release.

Police ask the public to not engage with the scammers, including not giving them private information or money, and to hang up immediately.

“Have this discussion with the elderly in your life, don’t let them fall victim,” OPP West Region wrote on Twitter.

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