"Grandparent Scam" Strikes the South Plains Again

May 08, 2014


“Grandparent Scam” Strikes South Plains Again
Grandparents Fall Victim to Scammers Posing as their Grandchildren

Lubbock, TX: Better Business Bureau® serving the South Plains of West Texas is warning about the “Grandparent Scam” once again. Well-meaning grandparents who think they are helping a grandchild in distress are becoming victims of another wave of the so-called “Grandparent Scam,” warns the Better Business Bureau. One consumer mentioned her grandson’s name on the phone and the caller then used the name all throughout the call, making the grandmother feel like it was her grandson. In the end, this consumer sent a total of $5,000 to the caller.

How the scam works:

Typically, the grandparent receives a frantic phone call from a caller they are led to believe is their grandchild. A scammer, posing as their grandchild, explains that he or she has gotten into trouble, often in a far off place, and needs their help. The “grandchild” might claim he or she caused a car accident or was arrested for drug possession. With the new wave of calls, victims are also contacted by someone claiming to be a police officer or lawyer representing the grandchild in court.

The caller pleads to the grandparents not tell his or her parents and asks that they wire thousands of dollars for reasons including posting bail, repairing the grandchild’s car, covering lawyer’s fees or even paying hospital bills for a person the grandchild injured in a car accident.


BBB offers this advice to avoid falling for the “Grandparent Scam”:

Be skeptical- Ask questions that only family members would know—like pet names or birthdays—without revealing too much personal information.

• Verify information- Check with family members to confirm the locations of grandchildren.

• Don’t send money- Never wire money out of the country to persons unknown.

• Stay private- Regularly update privacy settings for social media sites. Scammers often make their stories more believable by trolling for personal information on Facebook, Twitter and similar sites.

Know where to turn- Victims should expediently report incidents to local law enforcement agencies and the state Attorney General’s Office.


About BBB:
BBB of the South Plains, Inc. serves 18 counties of the Texas South Plains including Bailey, Borden, Cochran, Crosby, Dawson, Dickens, Floyd, Gaines, Garza, Hale, Hockley, Kent, Lamb, Lubbock, Lynn, Motley, Terry, and Yoakum. BBB's mission is to be the leader in advancing marketplace trust. BBB accomplishes this mission by creating a community of trustworthy businesses, setting standards for marketplace trust, encouraging and supporting best practices, celebrating marketplace role models and denouncing substandard marketplace behavior.

Businesses that earn BBB Accreditation contractually agree and adhere to the organization's high standards of ethical business behavior. BBB is the pre-eminent resource to turn to for objective, unbiased information on businesses and charities.

Serving the South Plains of West Texas
3333 66th St.
Lubbock TX 79413-5711
806.763.0459 • 1.800.687.7890 • 806.744.9748 fax • 1.866.728.3540 fax