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Scammers posing as grandchildren in hospital with COVID-19, asking for money

Scammers are posing as a grandchild who has been hospitalized with COVID-19. The "grandchild" needs funds wired immediately for medical fees.

JAMES CITY COUNTY, Va. — James City County is warning people about scams that target grandparents.

Scammers are posing as a grandchild who has been hospitalized with COVID-19.

The "grandchild" needs funds wired immediately for medical fees.

But the Federal Trade Commission sent out a consumer warning about this new scam

Officials say you should never wire money to anyone without verifying the caller's identity.

If someone calls or sends a message claiming to be a grandchild, other family member or friend desperate for money:

  • Resist the urge to act immediately – no matter how dramatic the story is.
  • Verify the caller’s identity. Ask questions that a stranger couldn’t possibly answer. Call a phone number for your family member or friend that you know to be genuine. Check the story out with someone else in your family or circle of friends, even if you’ve been told to keep it a secret.
  • Don’t send cash, gift cards, or money transfers – once the scammer gets the money, it’s gone.

If you get a scam call, report it to the FTC.

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