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Grandparents Scam 'Reared Its Ugly Head Again'

New Canaan Police warn residents that if their grandchildren call them asking for wire transfers of money, they should probably double-check to make sure the call is legit.

 

It goes like this: The phone rings. You answer. On the other end of the line, someone pretending to be your grandson or granddaughter says they're in trouble, says they're locked up in jail and need you to wire money for their release. 

It might sound legit enough—they'll get the name right, at least. 

Should you decide to wire money, though, someone you will never know will make off like a bandit with a couple thousand dollars. 

According to Sergeant Carol Ogrinc, at least four New Canaan residents reported since Friday they received phone calls attempting to lure them into the "grandparents scam"—as it's called—but all four of them were wise enough not to take the bait. 

Ogrinc said the calls usually begin with a female pretending to be the potential victim's granddaughter explaining her current predicament and saying she needs money. 

"Usually a male gets on the phone [then] claiming to be an attorney, a police officer, and tells them to wire the money," she said. "If someone’s going to be bonded out, police departments don’t ask to wire money."

Should New Canaan residents find themselves in this situation, Ogrinc said they should jot down the information the voice on the other end of the phone provides.

"Don’t send anything and immediately after you hang up the phone, call that grandchild, or call the grandchild’s parents to confirm it," Ogrinc said. "It’s not going to be confirmed because it’s a hoax, it’s a scam."

Once the money's been wired, Ogrinc said it's nearly impossible for it to be recovered. 

Over the years, Ogrinc said, some New Canaan residents have been victims of this scam. 

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