The New York State Police in Batavia is warning the public of an increase of phone scams targeting elderly citizens.
State Police say this scam includes the following scenarios:
– The caller claiming to be a family member in trouble or arrested in another State or Country. This caller will put urgency on helping them and not to contact other family.
– The caller claims to be a law enforcement official with a family member under arrest demanding bail or funds for them. Police agencies do not contact family for bail money.
– The caller in both scenarios will advise the victim to get a specific amount of money and buy gift cards from popular stores such as Walmart, Home Depot, Lowes, Target and other big retail stores. The victim is told to call a number and read off the gift card identification number.
Those gift cards are then used to buy items and are resold at a lesser amount by the scammer.
If you have parents or elderly people in your family, State Police encourage you to explain this scam to them.