Port Moody seniors lose $12K in 3 ‘grandparent’ scams in 1 day

Click to play video: 'Ask an Expert: Protecting seniors from fraud'
Ask an Expert: Protecting seniors from fraud
Vancouver police have launched an awareness and education campaign focused on protecting older adults from falling victim to financial abuse and fraud. Sergeant Rita Raj and Det. Const. Julie Gilmore discuss the different types of scams targeting seniors and how to recognize the risk factors and red flags – Jan 28, 2024

Police in Port Moody, B.C., say three separate seniors were targeted on the same day by a well-known “grandparent” scam, getting swindled out of thousands of dollars.

Const. Sam Zacharias says in two of the three cases on Thursday fraudsters successfully obtained money from the victims, totalling $12,000 in cash.

In each case, a scammer calls an elderly person claiming to be a grandchild in need of cash due to a legal matter relating to incidents such as a car crash or bail.

Click to play video: 'Consumer Matters: B.C. senior who fell victim to failed banking fraud scam wants her money back'
Consumer Matters: B.C. senior who fell victim to failed banking fraud scam wants her money back

In the two cases where money was taken, the victims told police they handed money over to an unknown suspect who came to their homes in person.

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Zacharias says it’s common for scammers to tell elderly targets that an authority figure such as a bailiff or a lawyer would come to collect the money.

Zacharias says police don’t know for sure if the three cases in the small community of about 33,000 people are linked to the same scammer, but that it seems probable. He says officers are canvassing neighbourhoods and looking for surveillance footage to see if the fraudsters were caught on tape.

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