CA Home Care RegulationsMarch 22, 2016
This article discusses the importance of fraud alerts and keeping seniors safe. Senior citizens are unfortunately the targets of fraud very often because of their trusting nature and generosity. Often times, they may be impaired in some way, perhaps suffering from Alzheimer’s, and may be more prone to giving away money than they would have in their sharper years. Whatever the reason, senior fraud is alive and well in this country. But there is something you can do about it.
Stock broker fraud is one of the more common forms of fraud that hones in on unsuspecting senior citizens. The FBI points out that this age group is especially vulnerable to fraud due to the following reasons:
- Seniors have often accumulated large nest eggs in their retirement that attract scam artists.
- Many seniors can’t help but be polite and trusting of others; after all, they were brought up this way.
- Seniors often don’t report fraud because they don’t know where to begin or who to call. They often feel ashamed and don’t want to let anyone know they may have made a mistake.
If you know and love a senior citizen, you may have to take it upon yourself to protect them and make sure they don’t fall victim to fraud. Check out the most common forms of fraud in seniors:
- Prescription Drug Scams. You’re probably well aware of the skyrocketing prices of prescription drugs, particularly in regards to Medicare, that can really put a dent in the wallets of seniors with low income. Add to that the fact that many seniors live on a fixed income, and it’s no wonder they seek out cheaper sources for their medication. Those who are Internet savvy may venture online to find deals, thereby opening the door on scams artists looking for an easy score. Scam artists “sell” essential medications like heart meds and even anti-aging products like Botox at ridiculously low prices, taking the money and running without delivering the product.
- Internet and Email Scams. Other senior citizens who aren’t so Internet savvy can find the online world scary and difficult to navigate. Social media platforms alone are regular stomping grounds for fraudsters. Research reveals that adults over the age of 74 turn to the Internet for health information, product information and the latest news. But when it comes to online and email safety, they can easily be talked into something they don’t really understand. Sure, younger users are aware of all the tricks and scams, but older adults aren’t quite as confident and can be swayed into giving up their bank routing numbers, credit card numbers and social security numbers.
- Shady Stock Brokers and Financial Advisers. Many older adults unwittingly trust their stock brokers and financial advisers, blindly taking all their suggestions. This makes it easy for less-than-reputable professionals to take advantage of their clients. Shady trades, investment pressures, false or misleading information…these all make up a large part of senior fraud: stock fraud. Even stock brokers who are friends of the senior and financial advisers with excellent credentials can be fraudulent, advises Bankrate.
If you are interested in learning more about fraud alerts and keeping seniors safe with All Heart Home Care’s non-medical home care services, call us at 619-736-4677 for a free in-home consultation.