If you’re one of the thousands of people who use an unlisted cell phone number as your main phone, you probably don’t get a lot of unsolicited phone calls from telemarketers anymore. But in some parts of Canada, landlines are alive and doing well, especially with the older demographic. Because of that, there are a lot of older people who are still on the receiving end of phone scams. From people saying you have a virus on your computer they can fix for a fee to someone asking for a donation to a non-profit society without providing credentials, there are a lot of phone scams out there, but there’s one scam making the rounds right now that’s registering high on the bizarre level.
An impaired driving phone scam has resulted in one woman handing over $1,800 because she thought her son was on the line and that he had been charged with impaired driving in Quebec. The person calling her said he sounded different because his nose was broken in a crash, and he needed money to get out of jail after receiving an impaired driving charge.
She then received two follow up phone calls from a ‘public defender’ who encouraged her to hand over $1,800. She did, and shortly after she called her brother in Montreal only to find out her son was fine at home and it was a scam. Unfortunately at point it was too late. Because she had sent the money via wire transfer, there was no record of who received it.
Thankfully her son wasn’t actually hurt, but it just goes to show you what lengths people will go to in order to bilk someone out of money. If you’re on the receiving end of an impaired driving phone scam, make sure you hang up the phone, call your loved one to confirm he or she is safe, and say a thank you that no one you know has been hurt in an impaired driving crash or arrested for impaired driving.