The RCMP in Okotoks are cautioning locals of an increase in grandparent scams.

These scams target elderly people in an attempt to pressure them into sending money to scammers.

Typically, the grandparent scam revolves around a scammer contacting an elderly person online or over the phone and telling the victim they need to send money or bring money to a location to post bail for a relative. Scammers typically pose as a relative or a police officer during these scams.

Some recent scams, according to the Okotoks RCMP, have seen different tactics being deployed.

They've seen scammers posing as family members asking for money for bills, to cover a lottery win, or to invest in a business.

According to the Okotoks RCMP, they've opened six new files relating to elderly residents being targeted by scammers in the last nine days.

They're sharing some tips to protect people from such scams:

  • Do not send or give money to someone claiming the need bail money – it must be paid at an authorized building
  • RCMP or other law enforcement agencies will never contact you for bail money.  The person needing bail money will be able to contact you themselves over the telephone
  • Do not send or give money to a person or business unless you trust them
  • If a family member does request money over text messages or social media, consider confirming their identity through a phone call or question only they could answer
  • Protect yourself by making your social media accounts private so only people you approve can see your information