Are Your Parents Targets for Scammers?
It’s one thing to have to worry about your elderly parents, it’s another to have to worry about them being a victim of fraud. Senior citizens are high targets for fraud schemes because they most likely have a “nest egg”, own their own home, or have excellent credit. All of these factors are attractive to con artists.
But what can you do to keep them from being the next victim? Here are some ways to help protect them.
Un-List and Opt-Out
Discuss with your parents and consider un-listing their phone number so that it is not easily accessible. Do the same with their home address by signing up to be on the opt-out list with Direct Marketing Association. This service will allow for your parents to stop unwanted junk mail, and limit the availability of their contact information to potential scammers.
Keep an open dialog about fraud and potential threats. Remind them that they can’t win a sweepstakes that they didn’t enter, or have to provide their personal information to someone stating they are calling from the Government (it’s the Government, they already have all your information).
Don’t Cast Blame
Although this can be difficult, don’t blame your parents for the potential fraud they may get themselves mixed up in. Doing so can possibly cause them to shut down and not be willing to share information with you or disclose if they think they are being targeted again.
Fraud can happen to anyone. The more vigilant your family is at limiting the potential for fraud, the safer it will be.