Healthcare, insurance, nursing homes, and an overwhelming sense of confusion when it comes to technology. It’s easy to see why there is no shortage of financial scams targeting seniors. To top it off, there is often a sense of embarrassment if you’ve fallen victim to one of these crimes, so they often go unreported.
It’s not just the wealthier seniors targeted. The scams are so prevalent that lower-income seniors can fall victim, too. Below are a few of the most popular scams that seniors and their loved ones should be aware of.
Popular Financial Scams Targeting Seniors
It’s no secret that seniors may be slower to adapt to online technologies. They’re not as familiar with the common safety measures that many of us take when it comes to smartphone or common internet usage. When pop-ups appear for virus scanning software that they don’t have downloaded appear, they may click on it. They may unknowingly download viruses, or respond to phishing emails.
Popular examples tend to include scammers impersonating the IRS or impersonating a popular company and asking users to update their personal information.
These scams are among the oldest since phone technology has been around longer than computers. On the whole, seniors are more willing to make purchases over the phone, making them an easier target. Once a purchase of this type has been made, scammers share the victim’s information as an easy target.
Medicare and Health Insurance Scams
Every U.S. citizen or a permanent resident over 65 qualifies for Medicare, and that makes them an easy target for fraud. Scammers will impersonate Medicare professionals attempting to get seniors to willingly hand over their personal information.
Scammers may read obituaries and then attend a service in an attempt to recover a fake debt from an unwitting widow. They will then try to extort money out of relatives to recover the fake debt.
What to Do If Someone You Know Has Fallen Victim
Financial scams targeting seniors are all too common of an occurrence. Many fall victim, so there is no need to feel embarrassed. The local police, your personal bank, and an organization called the National Adult Protective Services Association can all help. Don’t be afraid to get the help that you need.