In my post of October 19, 2014, I reported on how I was scammed by a crying woman – whose family had allegedly been in a serious accident.
Yesterday, I was talking with a fellow lawyer. He mentioned that he’d received a voicemail message from his father – “Call home as soon as you can.” He did. The father was agitated and reported that his grandson – my friend’s nephew who is a minor – had been detained by police for drinking and having open alcohol in the car. The caller – a “lawyer” – said he could resolve things for “four hundred dollar Amazon gift cards.” The father was to get the gift cards – and impart the numbers by telephone.
My friend called the boy’s high school. Turns out that the boy was in sitting in class — nowhere near a police station. Eyes narrowed and efforts to track down the criminals was fruitless.
These crooks go on Facebook, track names, chronicle dates and gather information. They identify relatives – and then spring.
There are a lot of scams out there — especially for older folks (which includes anyone older than I am). I have received a fair number of calls from folks (who sound like they’re from Mumbai) indicating that I have been targeted by the IRS and that if I only I send . . . . .
The upshot is — when you get calls like this that seem urgent and require the sharing of personal information, don’t do it. It’s likely a scam. It’s a serious and ongoing problem. If you need more information on scams, send me your Social Security number and credit card information and I will forward to you my recommendations for avoiding them.