Virtual kidnapping on the rise

Posted at 10:49 PM, May 25, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-25 23:22:23-04

There's a new scam affecting parents and students -- and it's called virtual kidnapping.

The scam has reportedly hit areas all over DC, Maryland and Virginia. An unknown person calls parents, claiming to have kidnapped their child. The perpetrator then demands a ransom for the child.

The Catholic Schools Office of the Archdiocese of Washington first became aware of the scam. A parent at an archdiocesan school received the call. Another parent at a local private school also received the call. In one case, the caller pretended to put a child on the phone. Both parents realized that the call wasn't real and their children were accounted for and safe.

The FBI has some additional information on what exactly a virtual kidnapping is. If you do receive one of these calls, notify local law enforcement, the Maryland Center for School Safety and your school administrators.

Download the ABC2 News app for the iPhone, Kindle and Android.