JAMESTOWN-The New York State Police is warning the public Wednesday on a recent increase of phone scams to elderly citizens.
The scam reportedly includes the following scenarios:
- The caller claiming to be a family member in trouble or arrested in another State or Country. This caller will put urgency on helping them and not to contact other family.
- The caller claims to be a law enforcement official with a family member under arrest demanding bail or funds for them. **Police agencies do not contact family for bail money**
The caller in both scenarios will reportedly advise the victim to get a specific amount of money and buy gift cards from popular stores such as Walmart, Home Depot, Lowes, Target and other big retail stores. The victim is told to call a number and read off the gift card identification number.
Those gift cards are then used to buy items and are resold at a lesser amount by the suspect.
Authorities urge citizens to take the time to talk to their elderly family members.