Beware of the Grandparent Scam
The “grandparent scam” is an ugly crime that can cost senior citizens thousands of their hard-earned money. It plays out like this: You get a call from someone pretending to be your grandchild. The caller says there’s an emergency and asks you to send money right away. According to the FTC, these scammers are experts at impersonating people they’ve never even met.
An obvious giveaway is how they ask you to send the money to them. It’s typically through a wire transfer service, a prepaid card or gift card. Don’t do it! There’s a good chance this is an impostor trying to steal your money!
What To Do If This Happens To You
First, think of what you need to do in order to determine if the situation is real. Verify the person’s identity by asking questions someone else couldn’t possibly answer, such as the name of a family pet or the date of their mother’s birthday. Next, get off the phone and check with the person who supposedly called you or a family member.
How To Protect Yourself in the Future
The Consumer Federation of America advises you to use firewall, anti‐virus and anti‐spyware software. Also, don’t open attachments in emails from strangers, since they can contain programs that enable crooks to get into your computer remotely.
If you’re a victim of a grandparent scam or another form of fraud, report it to the FTC at ftc.gov/complaint or by calling 1-877-FTC-HELP.
The information herein is general/educational in nature & should not be considered financial or legal advice. Maspeth Federal Savings makes no warranties about such information or results obtained by its use, and disclaims any liability arising out of your use of, or financial position taken in reliance on, such information. Consult an attorney or finance professional regarding your specific situation.