Grandparents: Here’s another reminder not to fall for the scam that preys on your love for your grandchildren.

The Summit County Office of Consumer Affairs has received a complaint regarding an 80-year-old man who fell victim to being scammed out of nearly $4,000.

On Sept. 25, a Cuyahoga Falls resident reported that her elderly father received a call from someone claiming to be his grandson. The caller said he was arrested and needed money to be bonded out of jail. The scam artist then instructed the senior to first call his “attorney” and give him money to bail him out of jail. The senior then called this “attorney” who reiterated the instruction. The grandparent was told to purchase $4,000 worth of Target gift cards and then call back with the card numbers, which he unfortunately did. The grandfather subsequently found out his real grandson was never arrested or in jail.

This incident mirrors other reports found through the Federal Trade Commission and other local consumer affairs agencies. These scam artists play on your emotions and seniors are often the most vulnerable victims.

Such scammers target senior citizens knowing that they are most vulnerable concerning their grandchildren. These scammers are very intelligent and difficult to apprehend. These thieves operate out of state or even out of the country. They use throw-away cellphones, and untraceable credit cards. If you fall for this scam and give money to these people, your money is most likely gone.

Here are some tips to protect yourself:

• Don’t fill in the blanks: Don’t give out a relative’s name. The scammer wants you to say “Johnny [or whatever name], is that you?”

• Verify it’s your grandchild: Ask a question that only the real grandchild or parents would know.

• Resist the pressure to send money quickly and secretly.

• Refuse to send money via gift cards, debit cards, wire transfers or overnight deliveries. Never give out personal information.

• To read about more scams, go to Betty’s Best Tips at www.ohio.com/betty

Betty Lin-Fisher can be reached at 330-996-3724 or blinfisher@thebeaconjournal.com. Follow her @blinfisherABJ on Twitter or www.facebook.com/BettyLinFisherABJ and see all her stories at www.ohio.com/betty