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RCMP warn of grandparent scams targeting Westlock, Morinville residents

RCMP are issuing a warning after a string of scams aimed at residents in Westlock and the surrounding area.

Mounties say several reports have been made about an attempted grandparent scam, where victims are called by someone pretending to need money to help out a loved one.

“Typically, suspects in grandparent scams will pretend to be lawyers, police officers, judges, or family members. Suspects will usually ask for cash, gift cards or Bitcoin,” RCMP said.

The RCMP said artificial intelligence was likely used in some calls to “spoof” the voice of a relative or loved one.

The calls have been reported all over Alberta, with recent frauds noted in Westlock, Clyde and Morinville.

RCMP are reminding residents that bail is always paid in person at a courthouse or correctional centres.

“If a person claims to be a police officer or judge, call that police service or court house directly to confirm the situation – police and courts will never ask for any form of payment,” RCMP said in a press release.

“Never give out personal information over the phone or online to someone you don’t know—the police or courts will not ask for personal information over the phone.”

Anyone who has been a victim of these crimes, or anyone with information, should call Westlock RCMP at 780-349-4491 or local police.

Anonymous tips can be given to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 or online at www. 

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