The Prince Albert Police Service has asked residents to be on the lookout for fraudsters targeting seniors and older family members with fake emergencies.
The Family/Grandparent Emergency Scam involves a potential victim, often an older adult, receiving a phone call from someone claiming to be a family member. The fake family member claims to be in an emergency and requests money for various purposes.
The fraudsters may also work in groups and connect the victim to another person claiming to be a police officer, lawyer, doctor, or representative of another profession. The scammer will often have the injured person speak on the phone. They may say that the family member has broken their nose, which is why their voice sounds different. Payment is often requested as cash, gift cards, or cryptocurrency. This is a scam.
Police say anyone who receives a suspicious phone call should ask the caller to verify their identity and never give any personal information to anyone. Hang up and fact check with family. They may try tactics to coerce you into giving information, hang up and call the police.
If you have been a victim of the scam and suffered a financial loss, please report the incident to the PAPD online or call 306-953-4222.
You can also report a scam even if you did not suffer financial loss to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre at 1-888-495-8501.