SHREWSBURY – The Shrewsbury Police Department has recently detected an uptick of two phone scams occurring in both Shrewsbury and neighboring communities.
The first scam is when a scammer calls an elderly person asking for money and claiming they are someone they know, such as their grandchild. Shrewsbury police said the scammers are also posing as doctors or law enforcement officers stating their grandchild has been in an accident.
According to the police department, the suspects will act like they know a lot of information about the victims, such as their names, the names of their children and grandchildren, phone numbers and addresses.
Additionally, the scammers may claim that the victim’s grandchild or child was involved in an OUI accident with injuries and need bail money. They may also identify themselves as assistant district attorneys and call from a few different phone numbers.
The scammer may call back alleging someone died as a result of the crash and request additional bail money.
As part of the scam, they will have the victim mail money to a specific address or send someone to their house to pick up the money.
They may also instruct victims to go to the bank, deposit or withdraw large amounts of cash and not explain to the bank tellers why they are taking out money.
To prevent others from catching onto the scam, the “grandchild” may also say they are in trouble and beg the grandparents not to tell any other family members, according to the police department.
Among their tips to avoid the scam, Shrewsbury police suggested not providing the grandchild’s name and bank or credit card numbers before notifying family members of a suspicious call.
Law enforcement phone scam
As part of the second scam, a person receives calls that appear to be from a law enforcement agency, such as the Shrewsbury Police Department.
The scammers have used a method of spoofing the number of the department, making it appear as though it is from an official agency, according to police.
The suspect will identify themselves as a law enforcement officer, informing the victims that they have a warrant for their arrest or are in trouble. The scammer will ask the victim to transfer money to them.
If anyone receives any calls from official numbers that they feel are suspicious, the Shrewsbury Police Department recommends hanging up and calling the department on their business line at 508-845-1212.
Anyone who has been or knows someone who has been a victim of these scams should also call the department.