Seniors are a common target for scams perpetrated by scammers since they are old with weak memory and are unaware of the latest scams rampant in society.

Thieves target people to steal their money and personal information every year, and they frequently target older people. According to the FBI, fraud costs seniors more than $3 billion annually. If you haven’t already been the target of a scam in the upcoming years, you might. Family members are occasionally even responsible for attacks, particularly elderly relatives. Among the most typical scams targeting seniors are:

  • Charity scams
  • Funeral scams
  • Government imposter scams
  • Grandparent scams
  • Internet scams
  • Investment scams
  • Medicare scams
  • Reverse mortgage scams
  • Romance scams
  • Sweepstakes scams

Here is an explanation of how these scams targeting the elderly operate and what you can do to prevent becoming a victim.

Charity Scams

In the event of a storm or other natural disaster in your area, a thief may phone and solicit funds for a charity trying to reconstruct the area or assist needy families. They frequently ask for information about your credit card or bank account so they may access your money. Don’t consent to donations to charities over the phone or when you are first contacted. Instead, look into the company and get a phone number to call if you want to make a gift.

Funeral Scams

After a loved one passes away, you can receive a call from a thief demanding payment for a debt they claim your deceased relative left behind if you post an obituary in a local newspaper. In a different variation of this con, the fraudster can show up at the burial service to learn more about you before requesting money to settle a debt. You can receive a call from someone pretending to be from the funeral home, telling you that there are additional fees that haven’t been paid yet. Refuse to give money immediately in response to these requests and demand documented proof of the expense.

Government Imposter Scams

You can get calls from individuals posing as representatives of the IRS or the Social Security Administration, demanding quick payment of back taxes or requesting personal data to continue receiving Social Security or Medicare payments. The con artist may be employing a method known as spoofing, which makes the incoming phone number seem authentic. However, the caller will probably demand that you provide information or make a payment, which may need to be made using a gift card.

According to lawyers,”The IRS and the SSA will avoid contacting people through a phone call.”

Grandparent Scams

In this instance, someone will call and demand money while posing as the caller’s grandchild. The caller may pretend they are experiencing an emergency and don’t want anyone to know, such as a vehicle accident or legal issue. They may request that you send them cash or gift cards.

The specialist notes that scammers frequently use obituaries and social media to get the data they need to make the call seem real. Create a code phrase for the grandchild to use in case of emergency.

Internet Scams

You might become the target of online scammers if you post personal information on social media. Internet con artists can get publicly available personal information about you and use it to create a false narrative that would hopefully persuade you to part with money or divulge further details.

A renowned attorney revealed that his client was recently ripped off a significant amount of money using Facebook. The con artist purported to be an army officer and stated they required money to return from Afghanistan and see their children. Press “delete” if a message asks you to click a link, divulge personal information, or provide money.

Investment Scams

Someone posing as a financial advisor, real estate investor, or wealth manager may get in touch with you and offer you a lucrative investment opportunity or large profits in exchange for your money. These frauds will grab your money and leave you with nothing. Avoid making hasty decisions and seek the advice of a reputable advisor with the necessary credentials before sending any payments to a new investment opportunity.

Medicare Scams

You might receive a call from someone pretending to be a Medicare agent who can help you acquire additional coverage and save money. The caller might inquire about your details or checking account numbers and may even know about you. If you receive a call, email, or text regarding Medicare, disregard it. Instead, contact Medicare directly if you have any questions regarding your medical coverage.

Reverse Mortgage Scams

An individual who claims you can use a reverse mortgage to access some of the equity in your home may get in touch with you if you own your own home. They can offer to evaluate your house for a fee, give you a false estimate of its value, and urge you to sign the false loan paperwork. Never provide information about your house or make a payment toward a reverse mortgage in response to any demands. Instead, speak with a trustworthy lender or advisor in your area if you’re considering acquiring a reverse mortgage to learn more about your alternatives.

Romance Scams

If you join an online dating site, you can get contacted by phonies who want to start a relationship. The con artist will ask for money after you speak on the phone or begin dating to cover their utility bill, parking ticket, home repair, or other expenses. If you date for a year or longer, the scheme may continue for a while. Investigate the people who contact you via an online dating site to avoid becoming a victim. If you’re unsure, get a second opinion from a reliable source, and ignore any requests for cash.

Sweepstakes Scams

Someone impersonating a lottery winner can get in touch with you to congratulate you. They may give you a phony check, which may seem genuine at first until the bank rejects it. You may then be requested to pay fees or taxes on top of the fake check. For example, a client of an attorney was informed that his wife, who is suffering from dementia, participated and won $15 million in a global sweepstakes. However, the client was forced to pay fees after being aware of this.

If you hear that a stupid person has won something or made a commitment, do your research. People shouldn’t, for instance, ever send you money that you must, in any manner, shape, or form, give to someone else.