Scammers target local seniors

Scams aimed at the elderly continue to target Summerland residents.

Scams aimed at the elderly continue to target Summerland residents.

Cpl. Richard Schumacher of the Summerland RCMP detachment said variants on the grandparent scam continue to circulate in the community.

The caller claims to be the target’s grandchild who needs money to cover bail costs following an impaired driving arrest.

A variant of this call, which has targeted several Summerland residents, originates from a penitentiary in Louisiana where prisoners have been making collect calls asking for money.

Schumacher urges residents not to accept a collect call from an unknown caller.

The scams continue to have some success. Earlier this month, an 84-year-old West Kelowna woman was taken for $1,500 in the grandparent scam.

Other scam attempts circulating in Summerland include requests to send in money in order to claim a large deposit and a mystery shopper scam.

Under the mystery shopper scam, the target receives an unsolicited letter detailing how to earn extra money as a mystery shopper. The letter also contains a cheque and a list of how it is to be distributed. However, the cheque is counterfeit and the victim who deposits it and then sends money to others on the list would lose out.

This scam also has been reported in the Okanagan Valley earlier this month.

Information on frauds and scams is available through the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre at www.antifraudcentre-centreantifraude.ca.