Elder Fraud

Have you heard of older people getting scammed? 

If you have older people in your life, please warn them of the rise of scams targeting senior citizens. Anyone over the age of 60 is a potential target. Our senior population was raised to be polite and trusting of others. Scammers all too often exploit those beautiful traits. Scammers also know that the elderly often have a nest egg. So, they’ll pull all kinds of stunts to try and get their hands on it. These thieves can be friendly or sympathetic. However, they can also be threatening. They use email, snail mail, online dating sites, or phone calls. Sometimes they’ll even show up at the door to offer a type of phony service.

The total amount of money scammed has skyrocketed since 2017. The most common types of fraud include tech support, non-payment or non-delivery, identity theft, and romance scams. The average victim lost $18,000 in 2021, but over 3,000 people lost more than $100,000. It’s a growing international problem with highly sophisticated groups targeting the older generation. Many in this age group aren’t computer savvy. Some take medications that affect their memory or ability to discern. So they’re easy targets. A “refusal script” kept near the phone can help them say “no” to high-pressure callers. Remind them not to open links or to give out private information. Sometimes they even have to be rude! Warn your elders to be on guard so they’ll recognize a scammer.

And if you’re trapped by payday loans and credit card debt, contact Christian Credit Counselors. They can create a debt management plan specifically for you. For more information call the Crown Helpline: 800-722-1976 or visit online at crown.org/ccc.