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“Grandparent’ Phone Scams Target Hard of Hearing People

From Fox Chicago, 3/19/2012 -Sun-Times Media Wire

Chicago - Gurnee police said Monday they are seeing an increase in the number of phone scams targeting elderly residents who have trouble hearing, bad phone connections or other complications.
The so-called “grandparent” phone scams usually involve a man who calls elderly people and identifies himself as a grandchild, police said in a release. The man then says he has been arrested and needs money wired to him in order to post bond. Police said the money is usually asked to be wired to somewhere outside the country, such as Lima, Peru.
To make the ruse sound more believable, a second person acting as a police officer or lawyers will interrupt the conversation, police said. The caller will also ask the victims not to notify other family members because they “don’t want to get in trouble,” police said.
Police said they believe the calls are coming from somewhere in Canada. They also warn that the scammers might also contact victims through email.
Police recommend that elderly residents should ask anyone who claims to be their grandson to clearly state their name. Police also say residents should not share any information over the phone and that urgent requests for wiring money is usually a scam.