THIS IS FROM THE ATLANTA JOURNAL-CONSTITUTION NEWSPAPER: http://www.ajc.com/news/seniors-warned- ... 90803.htmlGRANDPARENTS ARE ASKED TO BE ON THE ALERT FOR A SCAM WHICH MAY BE SPREADING DUE TO ITS SUCCESS, THANKS MOSTLY TO INFORMATION PEOPLE HAVE PUT OUT ON FACEBOOK! The con works something like this: A caller targets the home of a senior and fishes around for the name of a younger relative, using an opening greeting such as, “It’s your favorite grandchild!”
If the caller obtains a name -- gleaned from the conversation or previously collected off Facebook -- he or she claims to be stranded and in an emergency situation out of the country, and asks for money to be wired.
“This is a new twist on an old scam, which has been around for years,” said Fred Elsberry Jr., Atlanta BBB president.
There have been no reports in Georgia that anyone has received such a call. The hustle has been reported to BBBs in California, where victims were convinced to wire money to Mexico.
Typically, the scammer will ask the senior not to contact his or her mother or father, so not to worry them.
These callers now have a better chance of success because they’re armed with a lot more personal information, mostly gathered from Facebook.
“We’re suspicious that people are giving out too much personal information on their Facebook pages,” Elsberry said. “All a scammer has to do is friend a lot of people. Then he can find out if someone’s going on vacation, where they’re vacationing and can obtain names and personal details of family members. It’s obvious social media is helping this scam evolve.