Someone Has Tried to Scam Me

So my phone rings this morning, and an unfamiliar voice says, “Hello, Grandpa.” It’s a male voice, which makes me suspicious because my grandchildren are girls.

I do have a great-grandson, and I wouldn’t recognize his voice on the phone, and it’s just possible that this might be him. He goes on to tell me he’s out in Las Vegas for a wedding, and he had a bit too much to drink and got in a car accident and some woman and her little child were badly injured and the breathalyzer said he was over the limit, and the judge says he’s gonna have to go to jail… oh, and would I please send bail money?

No sooner had the words, “Sorry, but I don’t have the money to bail you out,” left my lips than the caller hung up.  Of course, if I did have a grandson, he would have known that asking me for bail money would be like asking me for money for a sex-change operation. Ain’t gonna happen, sonny.

And so a word of caution: this is a very common scam, folks. Please don’t fall for it. If you get a phone call from a grandson or granddaughter claiming to be in serious trouble, please send money–don’t. Or at least check it out before you do anything. Ask to speak to the police, for instance. Find out if he really is in a police station. Don’t be a sucker.

A few weeks ago I got an email from someone I know, a minister, saying he’s stuck in the Philippines because he got mugged and they took all his money, and would all his friends please wire him some dough so he can come home… It was fake. The real minister found out about it because someone told him about the email.

If you really must send money to someone you don’t know–hey, send it to me.

About leeduigon

I have lived in Metuchen, NJ, all my life. I have been married to my wife Patricia since 1977. I am a former newspaper editor and reporter. I was also the owner-operator of my own small business for several years. I wrote various novels and short stories published during 1980s and 1990s. I am a long-time student of judo and Japanese swordsmanship (kenjutsu). I also play chess, basketball, and military and sports simulations. View all posts by leeduigon

14 responses to “Someone Has Tried to Scam Me

  • Greg Lammiman

    The last scam call I got, I got an impulse just after I hung up, which I think I may use in the future. Something like this – “You need to repent. You are breaking God’s law by trying to deceive others and taking what isn’t yours.” Put them before the judgment seat, where they belong. Maybe God will convict them! I would only use this on calls that are clearly scams, not just soliciting.

    Like

    • leeduigon

      Oh, this was a scam, all right. No doubt about it. As for your plan–well, all I can say is, you’d be amazed how fast these people can hang up on you, once they see they aren’t getting any money.

      Like

  • Mike Nichols

    Another all too common one of the last few years is a computer company calling to help you get rid of a virus you have been found to have. Most start off being free – then get you to run some program online that does a very impressive smoke and mirrors show of “fixing” many things (likely not a thing really found or fixed) and then find a more serious threat that needs a “advanced” or “professional” version of their program – at a healthy amount. A variation of this thinly veiled scam actually locks your pc down and without the password its useless, holding your data and use for ransom. Pay or you wont see it again.. etc That bunch at least at the end will reveal their true colors as being crooks. I advise my clients to not trust any phone calls claiming to be a computer or software company without a way to verify positively. – Thanks again Lee for your blog – always thought provoking, and often useful and/or entertaining. Keep it up!

    Like

  • LadyWiz

    Sorry I’ve been not posting lately to your delightful blob. Cyber attacks are getting more intensive lately, I think. I just lost my SECOND Gmail account and they can’t account for it at all.

    I suspect hacking so I suggest everyone start changing their passwords more regularly. I hate these as anyone, but I lost some important stuff.

    Like

  • Dorothy Robbins

    I’M 92 (SOME OF YOU ALREADY KNOW THAT) AND LAST YEAR NO LESS THAN FOUR (4) YOUNG MEN TRIED TO PULL THAT ON ME! I STRUNG THEM ALONG UNTIL THEY FINALLY REALIZED THEY WERE BEING “HAD” AND THIS OLD LADY WASN’T GOING TO BE A VICTIM. THEY GOT TIRED OF THE GAME! I’M GLAD FOR THIS YEAR. NO SCAMS SO FAR! HOWEVER, I LIKE THE GIVE THEM A GOOD GOSPEL MESSAGE IDEA. I WILL USE IT NEXT TIME! THANK YOU.

    Like

    • leeduigon

      Four? Wow, I had no idea you were so popular!

      My scammer used clumsy mentalist tricks to disguise his lack of preparation. Like so: “It’s me, your favorite grandson.” When I said I had a great-grandson but no grandson, “Oh, yeah, same thing.” And when I asked, “Billy?”, he replied, “Yeah, it’s me–Billy.”

      They must think they’re talking to Obama voters.

      Like

  • UnKnowable

    Every scam known to humanity seems to be flying at us these days, usually via the Internet or our telephones. Believe none of what you hear and half of what you see.

    Like

  • Linda Sorci

    Last year my mother-in-law was the recipient of a ‘Hi Gramma, it’s me’ call. She said it really didn’t sound like her grandson’s voice, but she was honestly concerned that if he was in trouble, she didn’t have any money to send him. I don’t recall the ‘trouble’ he was in as his reason for needing money, but she had zero knowledge of computers (poor dear didn’t like the new remote controls for the TVs either as they were too complicated).

    The caller hung up when she told him she was very sorry she had no money to send.

    Like

  • Phoebe

    Lately, I’ve been getting not just the routine “I am with Windows and we have been receiving error messages from your computer” but also people purporting to offer me “more Medicare benefits.” (I’ve heard that these calls wind up asking for Social Security numbers and/or bank account information.) To most of these scams, I just reply, “Nonsense. And if you ever call us again, we’ll report your phone number to the Attorney General.” I try to remember to say “us” rather than “me” so they won’t think they’ve reached someone living alone.

    Of course, they tend to use rotating and/or faked phone numbers, so my threat is an empty one, but at least they know that another call will be a waste of time for them.

    Remember all those monster-and-disaster movies in which the Wise Scientist sighs at the end, “If only that genius had been used for good”? 🙂

    Like

    • leeduigon

      It reminds me of the convict who spend several years braiding a long, strong rope out of dental floss (!), which he used to escape from jail. Shades of the Count of Monte Cristo.

      If he had ever been given a paying job that hard, he would have considered himself ill-used.

      Like

      • David Ingram (@debater2016)

        The first time I received the IRS scam call I was alarmed, then common sense kicked in and I knew it was a fraud. After voting today my wife & I celebrated our freedom by sharing a Monte Cristo sandwich lunch at Cheddars. We were thankful to live in the only free country in the world, (Now, if only we citizens living in it were truly free).

        Like

    • UnKnowable

      I get these tech support calls all the time. One particularly insistent caller insists that I HAVE to listen to him because my Windows computer has a problem they have detected remotely. This, in spite of the fact that I don’t use a Windows computer. If tech support calls you and you have not initiated a request for service it is a scam, simply hang up.

      Like

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