MCSO local fraud alert: Scammers using your family info to obtain thousands of $$$ of gift cards

A clerk at a local Wal-Mart store is credited with saving a Jensen Beach woman $3,000, after the woman received a phone call that her grandson was in trouble.

The woman reported that she received a call from a male who she thought was her grandson.

The scammer told the victim he was in jail and needed help immediately.

He advised her to go to a local Wal-Mart and purchase $3000 in gift cards.

The plan was to provide the caller with the serial numbers on the gift cards immediately after the purchase.

When the victim went to Wal-Mart, she explained to the clerk what she needed and why.

The clerk advised her that it was a scam and would not sell her the cards out of concern she would be victimized.

A second victim was not so lucky. The Palm City woman was contacted via telephone by a scammer and given a similar story relating to her granddaughter, but she was told not to be truthful with the store clerk about why she needed $4000.00 in gift cards.

Instead she was instructed to tell the clerk that they were for a wedding.

When she arrived at the retail store, she had to sign up for a membership, then purchase the cards.

When the transaction was completed, she called the contact number back and gave the scammer all of the information on the back of the cards.

By the time the victim made personal contact with her granddaughter and realized it was a scam, the cards had been redeemed.

This is a very old scam targeting senior citizens.

Please contact your family members, friends, and neighbors and let them know that this is occurring.

The call may seem real because the scammer will have information about your family members, (names, addresses), but it is a scam.

If you receive a call and are concerned about the well-being of family member, hang-up and attempt to make contact with that family member yourself.

If you cannot make contact, and are still concerned, call your local law enforcement office and we will assist you.

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