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Friday, June 1, 2012

Grandparents beware

A reader of a certain age writes:

I suspect most of your readers have heard about the grandson scam. This is the one where the caller pretends to be a grandson in trouble (accident, jail, etc.) in a foreign country and needs money wired fast.

I got one today. It started out, "Hi Grandpa, this is your oldest grandson." I have grandchildren, but they are all girls. However, the caller sounded like my nephew. My nephew travels all over the world. The caller said he was in Europe. It is not at all impossible that my nephew might be in Europe, but I think he is in the Virgin Islands this week. To make a long story short, I believed the caller for a few moments, but I came to my senses and hung up after stringing him along for a couple of minutes. Our caller ID shows "Belvedere Ti CA (415) 366-9515, 1 minutes, 52 seconds, Today, 1:29 PM." I am assuming it is a spoofed ID.

Comments (7)

This one has been around in various forms for a while, kids, grand kids, sisters, brothers, nephews, etc.
The caller wants money to be sent by Western Union.
It is rather like the Nigerian Bank scams.

Wow! So that's how to afford to live in Belvedere\Tiburon.

Who needs fake grandchildren for that scam?

The usual schtick is "Don't tell Mom and Dad, but I'm in trouble," followed by a money request. Doubly sad because it preys upon older folks' need to be needed and loved.

Of course, older folks with a wicked sense of humor could have fun with this: "Why should I send you money? You never come and see me..." With a few improvisational skills, this could go on for a while.

Might help to ask for a name...

Fortunately, Caller ID showed this fraud was in California and not where he should have been.
He addressed me in a way contrary to what would have been normal. (no clue for you, Bozo).
He never got beyond Hello . . .

I had a call last week from the same number - Belvedere TI CA 415-366-9515. They were at a wedding out of the country. They started to tell me that at the bachelor party they had to much to drink. I asked "is this Steve" They said yes. I told them you are not my grandson. They said "Of course I am". I said no, he is in the Army and they don't let him just pack up and go off to a wedding. They hung up on me. :-)

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