The Peel Regional Police Fraud Bureau are advising residents of a new type of “Grandparent Scam” targeting seniors.

The scam involves a phone call being made to the victim, by an individual claiming to be a family member, usually a grandson. The victim is asked to purchase expensive ‘Rolex’ watches. The victim is advised that the watches are needed to pay back an outstanding debt, and in some instances, needed as a gift. The victim is directed to send the watch to an address, usually in Quebec, through a courier service.

They impress upon the victim that they do not want any other family members to know.

Peel Regional Police would like to remind residents that in the event they receive a call similar to this, they should verify the details of the request through another family member.  Any requests for money by unverified parties on the phone should be treated suspiciously. 

Here are some other tips to remember:  

• If someone calls claiming to be a lawyer/attorney or police officer, they will not ask you for money/jewelry over the phone.
• Residents with elderly family members who live alone, or have published phone numbers, should make them aware of this.
• Residents, in general, should be cognizant of the fact that there are many fraudulent schemes out there, using the internet and phone calls to contact potential victims.  Requests for money should be treated with caution and an appropriate amount of due diligence should be practiced.
• Education is the key to prevention with this type of scam. To learn more about this scam, and other scams affecting Canadians, residents are encouraged to visit www.antifraudcentre.ca
• Peel Regional Police also offer some more Safety for Seniors links which can be accessed here.

Anyone who has any information regarding this fraud is urged to contact the Fraud Bureau at (905) 453-2121, ext. 3335. Anonymous tips can also be left by calling Peel Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477), or by visiting www.peelcrimestoppers.ca