Five Common Scams Pulled on Seniors
People are always looking for a way to scam someone else. There are criminals who will try virtually anything, and many of them have found the perfect target: senior citizens. It’s not a new thing. Scammers will look for someone that will be easy to convince, who could become confused easily, or who may not understand what they are being told, and those people are usually elderly individuals. Whether you have a loved one in a nursing home, living with you, or living at home using in homecare, you will want to make sure they do not become a target of fraud. Here are some of the most common scams so that you know what they look like and then you can take steps to prevent these things from happening to your own elderly loved one.
1. Calling Grandma or Grandpa
The scammer will call an unsuspecting elderly individual, and when the phone is answered, they will say “Hey Grandma” or “Hey Grandpa.” The senior will guess which grandchild is calling and then the scammer will start talking as if they know them, getting around to asking for money.
2. Email Scams
While most of us know the Nigerian email is a scam, your elderly loved ones may not. If they use email and they receive something of this nature, they could be more likely to fall for it. In addition, senior loved ones may be more susceptible to phishing emails claiming to be coming from a bank or credit card company.
3. The Sweepstakes Win
Your loved one may receive mail that states they have won a sweepstakes. All they have to do to get to their money is pay a fee. They may not realize this is a scam and they may send off a check without realizing they have been taken for their money.
4. Medicare Scam
Someone may call your loved one claiming to be from Medicare. They will state the card has been stolen and they will ask the senior individual to provide their personal information. This is a gateway to identity theft and it is unfortunately used regularly on seniors.
5. Charity Scam
Unfortunately, it’s not uncommon for scammers to call an elderly individual claiming to be from a charity and asking for donations. They often do this right after a disaster. When the senior agrees to donate, they will ask for a credit card number over the phone.
You need to take extra steps to ensure your senior loved one is able to avoid scams. If you want more information on things you could do, then read this article (Two Reasons to Give Someone Else Bank Account Access Before Entering a Nursing Home) that explains one way you could help your loved one. Another article you may wish to read is this one, which explains financial power of attorney (Four Questions You Need Answered about Power of Attorney). This way, you can present your loved one with all the gathered information on how they can take steps to avoid scams.
Tags: Independent Living