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Elderly islander loses over £3k to WhatsApp scam

Elderly islander loses over £3k to WhatsApp scam

Thursday 04 May 2023

Elderly islander loses over £3k to WhatsApp scam

Thursday 04 May 2023

An islander in her 80s has lost over £3000 to a WhatsApp scam – with the scammer pretending to be her daughter in need.

Over the last month, islanders have been targeted by a series of scams whereby the perpetrator will impersonate the victim's son or daughter over a random 'Whatsapp' number.

The message will usually state that their phone has been smashed or is broken – explaining the unknown number – and that they are in urgent need of money.

Once the recipient replies, the conversation then turns to requests for money to help them.

Since the beginning of this week, the States of Jersey Police's Joint Financial Crime Unit has received over 15 reports of such text messages, and a collective loss of £9,500 in Jersey.

Last month, it was reported that islanders had lost over £12,000 to these scams in just eight recorded instances.

One islander – an elderly woman in her 80s – was tricked into giving the scammer over £3,000.

Although the victim did not want to be named, she did provide the details of her conversation with the scammer, which Express has recreated. 


Pictured: "Are you busy, I need a massive favour..."

In this instance, the scammer claimed they had an urgent bill due which they were unable to pay due to their broken phone. Posing as the victim's daughter, the scammer asked the elderly islander to pay it on their behalf. 

The scammer used the real name of the victim's daughter in their introductory message which they likely obtained through a search on social media platforms such as Facebook.

The scammer continued to try and call and message the victim until the phone number was blocked. 


Pictured: Once the payment was received, the scammer continued to pester the victim for money. 

Police are now urging anyone who receives one of the messages not to share any money or personal details. Instead, they should ignore the message and call the family member on their regular number to check. 

Islanders can find more information about how to gain protection from scams and frauds here

Anyone who suspects that they have been the target of a scam should contact the Jersey Fraud Prevention Forum at or at 01534 612612.

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