Grandparents Phone Scam

“Grandparents​​ Phone​​ Scam”


The​​ Flagler Beach Police Department​​ is providing this​​ awareness​​ announcement​​ to the public​​ in​​ an effort​​ to warn and alert citizens​​ in our community that there is a telephone “scam”​​ currently taking place in the area.​​ To date there have been no victims in Flagler Beach and we hope this information​​ thwarts anyone from becoming a victim. ​​​​ 


How this​​ Scam Works  


A grandparent receives a frantic call from someone they believe to be their grandchild.​​ ​​ The supposed grandchild sounds distressed and may be calling from a noisy location.​​ ​​ The supposed grandchild claims to be involved in some type of trouble​​ and/or criminal activity​​ while​​ traveling out of the country, such as being arrested or in a car accident or needing emergency car repairs, and asks the grandparent to immediately wire money to post bail,​​ pay for medical treatment or car repairs.​​ ​​ The scammer typically asks for several thousand dollars, and may even call back again several hours or days later asking for more money.​​ ​​ He or she may claim embarrassment about the alleged trouble and ask the grandparent to keep it a secret.


A​​ slight​​ variation of this​​ scam may involve two​​ (2) scammers;​​ the first scammer calls and poses as a grandchild under arrest. The second scammer, posing as a Law Enforcement Officer, then gets on the phone with the grandparent and explains what fines​​ and/or bond​​ needs​​ to be paid. ​​ 


This nationwide scam has a​​ common theme; money. ​​ The scammer always​​ requests​​ for the grandparent to wire money through Western Union or MoneyGram or to provide bank account routing numbers. ​​ The wiring​​ of​​ money is like sending cash; there are no protections for the sender.  Typically there is no way you can reverse the transaction, trace the money, or recover payment from the telephone con artists.​​ Their goal is to take your hard earned money. 


How to Avoid Becoming a Victim


Be suspicious when you receive a telephone call where:


  • A​​ grandchild calls you from a faraway location.

  • The grandchild says, "It's me," or "It's your grandson," or "It's your favorite grandchild."

  • The grandchild is in some trouble or some type of distress.

  • The caller asks for money to be wire transferred


Citizens in our community should stay​​ vigilant and maintain a healthy skepticism should they receive​​ telephone calls of this nature. ​​ If you receive a call​​ of this nature​​ please​​ be​​ cautious, hang up​​ and call another family member who can confirm your grandchild's whereabouts. ​​ Try calling your grandchild at the​​ telephone number​​ you​​ would normally reach him or her.  Please remember to stay calm and avoid acting out of a sense of urgency.​​ 


Do not​​ wire​​ any​​ money unless you have verified with an independent third party that your grandchild is truly in trouble​​ and when in doubt, please​​ contact​​ your​​ local Law Enforcement​​ agency​​ for assistance.


If you have​​ any questions​​ regarding this active phone scam, please feel free to contact Chief​​ Doughney​​ at (386) 517-2023. ​​​​ 


Additional​​ information on this specific fraud can be accessed at the following websites;


The Federal Bureau of Investigation;​​​​ 


Department of State:​​​​ 


AARP: ​​​​