Met Police warn parents against scary scam texts that start with ‘hi mum’

Met Police have warned of a recent increase in scary texts from scammers posing as people’s children.

The texts, known as the “WhatsApp mom and dad scam”, started gaining traction late last year but have now started to pick up again.

The elaborate scam involves receiving a request for money from an unknown number claiming to be a needy family member. Unfortunately, the scam has cost many parents hundreds of pounds.

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Met representatives took to social media to share the warning and warn parents of the scam saying: “There has been an increase in reports related to the ‘Mum and Dad WhatsApp Scam’. Please SHARE and remind friends and family to stay vigilant.

Screenshots shared by those who received text messages from unknown numbers show scammers trying to impersonate their children in various ways. A text reads: “Hi mom. My other phone broke down. But it’s my temporary number. You can save this one. Message me if you’ve seen this. Another said, “Hi dad, this is my new number. My phones won’t turn on so now you can text and call me on this number.

But what starts out as a believable conversation quickly becomes suspicious. Often a scammer may say that he cannot access his bank accounts, but urgently needs the money. When asked to provide the name of the child they are impersonating, scammers will respond with ambiguous and unspecific answers, such as simply stating that they are “the oldest child”.

Parents who receive such text messages have been advised to contact the impersonated family member using their original contact details and not to send any money before verifying the legitimacy of the text messages.

Whatsapp policy manager Kathryn Harnett said what uk “WhatsApp protects our users’ personal messages with end-to-end encryption, but we want to remind people that we all have a role to play in keeping our accounts secure by staying vigilant against the threat of scammers.

“We advise all users never to share their six-digit PIN with others, not even friends or family, and recommend that all users set up two-step verification for added security. And if you receive a suspicious message (even if you think you know who it’s from), calling or requesting a voice note is the quickest and easiest way to verify that someone is who they say they are. in need is a friend worth calling.

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