The Keys for Protecting Seniors From Fraud


People become more and more vulnerable as they age. While problems related to physical declines are the most obvious form of old-age weakness, they are far from the only vulnerability to be concerned about. Sadly, seniors are often victims of fraud, which can have enormous financial consequences.

Declines in cognitive ability and social isolation means many seniors are vulnerable to a wide variety of scams. Scammers know this, so many specifically target older folks. Older people are also popular targets because, after a lifetime of work, they may have considerable money saved up.

The sad reality of elder financial fraud is why it is so important for both seniors and anyone who has a senior they care about to know how older folks can stay safe from fraud. There are four rules to follow.

Don’t Trust Strangers

While friends or family members are sometimes perpetrators of fraud against seniors, the more likely culprits are total strangers. In these cases, the crook will usually make contact with a senior via phone or the internet. Unsolicited phone calls or email messages, even if they appear friendly in nature, should be viewed with a healthy dose of suspicion. Taking the claims of a stranger at face value is unwise. Many scammers take advantage of the courteous, polite nature of seniors, so seniors must be sure not to be too accommodating

Exert Extreme Caution When It Comes To Finances

People of all ages often fall for scams because they appear to be getting offered amazing deals. Of course, the rule should always be caution when it comes to money, especially large amounts of money. Scammers will often pressure potential victims to make immediate decisions, preventing them from having the time to carefully consider the situation. Seniors must be sure to watch for signs of emotional manipulation such as stoking fear or generating pity, a common tactic of con artists.

Get Help From Others

It’s sad fact of life that cognitive declines are common in old age. Both seniors and their loved ones must face this reality. Most elder fraud can be prevented if seniors discuss what is going on with a trustworthy person. Older folks must not allow misplaced pride to prevent them from seeking help when they need it. It’s a good idea for seniors to consult with someone before making any major financial decision.

Have Support From Loved Ones

Friends and family of seniors are crucial in fighting against fraud targeting older people. Not all seniors may be capable of understanding when they need to seek help, so loved ones must be proactive about reaching out. It’s a simple reality that seniors become gradually less able to care for themselves, so friends and family must become more closely involved with elders over time. While the care and attention of loved ones is crucial, trained caregivers can play a key role in protecting from elder fraud as well.

Senior fraud can be devastating. In worst-case scenarios, a senior may lose their entire savings, for which they worked a lifetime to earn. Such occurrences will have terrible consequences for both the senior and their loved ones. Staying vigilant against the threat of senior fraud is clearly crucial. The four rules presented above should be followed.

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