Fraudsters keep coming up with newer, more ingenious ways of parting us from our cash and one very vulnerable portion of the population is that of senior citizens. In recent times there are many frauds particularly aimed at seniors who should be aware of these:
Medicare Scam: This is something like a mobile lab scam – where the fraudsters target the elderly pretending to conduct fake checkups and then charging their Medicare account. Then another modus operandi is offering ‘free’ products door to door and then charging their Medicare account. Then there are those to steal someone’s identification number and use it to conduct tests; such as the woman who was charged for semen analysis and prostate exams!
Funeral Scams: There are the usual misleading pricing and faulty coffin problems that are faced by many in connection with funerals, but the major problem is posed by the Prepaid Funeral concept. Here a senior would, in order to ease the financial burden on their survivors, opt for a prepaid funeral – these are stacked against the buyer, are often fraudulent and fail to deliver all or some of what is promised.
The Census Scam: Here a person turns up claiming to be asking questions for the purposes of collating information about the census. They then proceed to ask about your bank account information, social security number and other financial details. Many provide this information in good faith, unaware that the motives are far from legal.
Anti Aging Products: The quest for a long life and a young body is a never ending one – it appeals to people’s vanity and their survival instinct to stay alive. So the many pills, sprays, lotions, creams and myriad other products that promise “reduced lines” or “youthful skin” or “look 10 years younger” make you sign up for a “free trial” and charge you for hundreds of dollars.
Care Giver Scams: As seniors come to rely more and more upon a caregiver, the dishonest ones may start to siphon off funds, insurance policies and other properties.
Lottery and Sweepstake Scams: Typically one is informed of having won a lottery but that there is a processing fee required and then one gets suckered for some more money.
The Fake Grandkids Scam: A supposed grandkid will call and say they are in dire need of money and are stuck somewhere. Or there will be a Canadian police officer who will call and tell you about a grandchild arrested in Canada asking that bail or bond is required to be furnished.
So beware of these and other senior scams.