WOODBRIDGE — A 77-year-old woman was scammed out of over $9,000 because she thought she was helping her grandson.

Dan Alexander, Townsquare Media NJ

The woman made six wire transfers starting in May after getting a call that her grandson was in a car crash, Woodbridge Police told the Patch of Woodbridge. Follow up phone calls said he needed money to help with his related legal fees.

Police told the Patch, the woman sent several more transfers via Western Union and Walmart2Walmart money. She reported the scam to Woodbridge Police on Friday after learning her grandson was not in a crash and was fine.

It's not known what prompted her to realize she was being scammed.

The FTC said the "Grandkid Scam" often can sound convincing and compelling. Often they will create urgency in order to get you to send money without thinking about it. The caller will ask you not to tell their parents, according to the New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs.

Many times a caller will provide information that can easily be found on your loved one's social media pages. The FTC suggests two steps to prevent a scam from happening:

  • Check it out: Look up your grandkid’s phone number yourself, or
    call another family member.
  • Pass this information on to a friend. You may not have gotten one of
    these calls, but chances are you know someone who will get one — if
    they haven’t already.

Contact reporter Dan Alexander at dan.alexander@townsquaremedia.com.

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