When it comes to our closest friends and family, denying a cry for help is hardly ever an option. If they call us from the side of the road at 2am in a town two hours away, we’ll be there in two hours to give them a ride, and if someone we love is ever looking for a shoulder to cry on after a rough breakup or other crisis in their personal life, we’ll take the day off work and bring a box of tissues.

But what if a family member calls you claiming to be in some sort of trouble and in desperate need of money?

According to the City of Binghamton Police Department, this is a cry for help you should be wary of.

Incidents of people phoning older family members and asking for money have been on the rise recently and authorities want to help keep your bank accounts safe.

The caller will typical call up the older person and ask for money to be wired or a cash card to be sent to an address outside of the United States, using personal information from the person they’re impersonating’s social media accounts.

Authorities say you should never wire money to anyone without verifying the person’s identity, whether that means asking personal questions or contacting other close relatives.

We’re not quite sure how this scam has picked up so much speed – I mean, wouldn’t you know that wasn’t Uncle Tim’s voice over the phone? But then again, scam artists exist for a reason: because they’re darn good at their jobs.

So, my friends, be careful who you are giving your money to over the phone and let your other friends and family know!