Franklin Police are warning residents of a frightening scam popping up in Middle Tennessee. “Virtual kidnappings” have surfaced in several big cities across the U.S. over the last two years. Scammers targeted three Franklin residents, this month. During a phone call, the scammer tells their target that they have kidnapped and will kill their loved one if they do not immediately facilitate a cash wire transfer. In one of the calls, a frantic female actually pretended to be the victim’s “kidnapped” daughter before turning the phone over to a man who demanded $5,000 in exchange for the kidnapping “victim’s” life.
Criminals often use social media to learn about their phone scam victims, and their loved ones, before initiating the scam. Some scammers go so far as threatening to kill the alleged kidnapping victim if the person they called attempts to contact their “kidnapped” loved one, or authorities.
Anyone who receives one of these calls should attempt to slow the conversation down, ask for more time, and contact the alleged kidnapping victim and police. For more tips on how to handle yourself if contacted by one of these scammers, visit this section of the FBI’s website.
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