Redwood City police deploying pedestrian safety campaign in September

Police warn about ‘virtual kidnapping’ scam in Redwood City area

in Crime/Featured/Headline and

Police are warning about a new scam targeting the Redwood City area called “Virtual Kidnapping” — when strangers call to say they have kidnapped your loved one for ransom.

The Redwood City Police Department published a blog post Thursday providing tips to educate residents about this scam. Residents receiving such calls should question why the calls aren’t coming from the supposed victim’s phone, for example, and be wary of demands to send money via wire transfer to foreign countries.

“In most cases, the best course of action is to hang up the phone,” according to police. “If you do engage the caller, don’t call out your loved one’s name. Try to slow the situation down. Request to speak to your family member directly. Ask, ‘How do I know my loved one is okay?’ Ask questions only the alleged kidnap victim would know, such as the name of a pet. Avoid sharing information about yourself or your family.”

Check out more tips in the blog post.