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Scamming the elderly Adam,
Taylor,
Katy &
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tjTim
Impact of Issue
Physical and emotional impact.
 Seniors may recuperate more slowly, and life-threatening illnesses can occur.
Inability to recover financially.
 If seniors lose income from a financial or real estate scam, robbery or burglary, they often
struggle even more if they are living on a fixed income.
Loss of independence. 
 Studies have shown that crime is a catalyst that can bring an end to emotional and financial
independence, curtailing the lives and lifespan of seniors.
Diminished quality of life.
 Inability to recover, worrying about the likelihood that it will happen again and regretting the
consequences of that poor decision may drive victims to become reclusive, embarrassed,
distressed, and suffer from poor self-confidence. 
Vicarious victimization.
 The National Center on Elder Abuse identified a phenomenon called "vicarious
History of Scamming
 Financial scams targeting seniors have become so prevalent that they’re now
considered “the crime of the 21st century.” 

Why? Because seniors are thought to have a significant amount of money sitting
in their accounts.
 Financial scams also often go unreported or can be difficult to prosecute, so
they’re considered a “low-risk” crime.

However, they’re devastating to many older adults and can leave them in a very
vulnerable position with little time to recoup their losses.
 It’s not just wealthy seniors who are targeted…Low-income older adults are also
at risk of financial abuse. And it’s not always strangers who perpetrate these
crimes.

Over 90% of all reported elder abuse is committed by an older person’s own
family members, most often their adult children, followed by grandchildren,
nieces and nephews, and others.
Types of scamming
Medical/health insurance scams
 Every U.S. citizen or permanent resident over age 65 qualifies for Medicare, so there is
rarely any need for a scam artist to go above and beyond to scam an elderly person.
 In these types of scams, perpetrators may pose as a Medicare representative to get older
people to give them their personal information, or they will provide bogus services for
elderly people at makeshift mobile clinics, then use the personal information they provide to
bill Medicare and pocket the money.
 How to spot the scam:

Check with your state's department of insurance to see if the company is properly licensed. And remember, if it
seems too good to be true, it most likely is.

What to do:
 If your policy is through an organization, report fraud to someone within the organization. Also, report the fraud to
the Federal Trade Commission at FTC.gov and your state's department of insurance.
Counterfeit prescription drug
scams
 Most commonly, counterfeit drug scams operate on the Internet, where seniors increasingly
go to find better prices on specialized medications. “This scam is growing in popularity—
since 2000, the FDA has investigated an average of 20 such cases per year, up from five a
year in the 1990s.”
 The danger is that besides paying money for something that will not help a person’s
medical condition, victims may purchase unsafe substances that can inflict even more
harm. This scam can be as hard on the body as it is on the wallet.
 Only buy prescription medications from a safe, reputable source.

If the seller is unfamiliar check with your state board of pharmacy or the National Association of Boards of
Pharmacy at www.nabp.net or call 847-391-4406.
 When you buy medications online, make sure the seller is properly licensed.
 If you believe you have bought a counterfeit drug, report it.
 Contact the FDA’s Medwatch program at 1-800-332-1088 or at http://www.fda.gov/medwatch
 Know your medications:

 If you know the size, shape, color, taste, and side effects of the prescriptions you take, you will more easily
identify possible counterfeits. Contact your pharmacist or doctor if you notice anything different about a medication.
 Pay attention to packaging:
Telemarketing/phone scams
THE PIGEON DROP
The con artist tells the
individual that he/she has
found a large sum of money
and is willing to split it if the
person will make a “good faith”
GET INVOLED & HELP
PREVENT ELDERLY
SCAMMING FROM YOUR
Individual/Family Needs
Assistance
1. Don't just tell your parent to hang up or throw out the letter.
 Have a talk about why. “You can't win a contest you didn't enter, Dad.” “You never have to
pay fees to collect lottery winnings, Mom.” Government agencies don't make unsolicited
phone calls and never ask for personal information — why would they? They've already got
it on file.
2. Don't shame or blame.
 Remind them what they taught you decades ago: Don't trust strangers — especially those
seeking personal information and money.
3. Try some reverse psychology.
 If you become aware that an aged parent is playing a sweepstakes or making a "double
your money" investment, ask how you can do the same. Psychologists say this tactic
sometimes prompts a warning — your parent doesn't want you to lose money, too. That's
your cue to ask, "Then why do you do it?" This could start a conversation that helps the
parent come to terms with the scam.
4. Turn them into protectors.
Correcting the issue
vNever sign blank insurance claim forms.
vNever give blanket authorization to a medical provider to bill for services
rendered.
vAsk your medical providers what they will charge and what you will be
expected to pay out-of-pocket.
vCarefully review your insurer’s explanation of the benefits statement. Call
your insurer and provider if you have questions.
vDo not do business with door-to-door or telephone salespeople who tell
you that medical services or equipment are free.
vGive your insurance/Medicare identification only to those who have
provided you with medical services.
vKeep accurate records of all health care appointments.
Teaching methods/ Strategies
Contact financial institutions to flag or freeze accounts. In some situations, such as fraudulent
activity on a credit card, the institution may reverse the charges.
File a police report. Even if the police decline to take action, the report provides a paper trail to
document the fraud and may be helpful in disputing charges or taking future legal action.
Order credit reports to look for other suspicious activity. Fraud against seniors is often not an
isolated incident, and you can request free credit reports from annualcreditreport.com, the only site
authorized by the government to distribute free reports or at their local banks.
Review bank accounts, insurance policies, investments and annuities for changes in account
ownership or beneficiaries. Rather than taking money while a senior is alive, scammers switch
beneficiaries or account ownership so assets will legally transfer to them upon the senior's death.
Review wills, trusts and powers of attorney. Watch for changes that may have been made under
undue influence.
Consider petitioning for guardianship or conservatorship. In instances in which an individual's
mental capacity has diminished, the court may appoint a guardian or conservator who then has the
power to void future transactions and take control of an individual's finances.
Agencies/ Services available
AARP. Provides the latest news on financial scams that
affect seniors.
The Better Business Bureau - Scam Stopper. Provides
resources to expose fraudulent schemes.
Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Provides
information about fraudulent financial schemes and offers
help to victims of deceptive financial products.
Commodity Futures Trading Commission: Provides
information to educate consumers and help them avoid
fraud in the U.S. futures markets.
ElderCare.gov. Connects you to community services for
older adults, including legal and financial assistance
services.
 Federal Bureau of Investigations. Provides information on
fraud schemes that use telephones, the Internet, mass
mailings, television, radio, and personal contact to swindle
consumers.
Federal Housing Finance Agency. Includes tips to help
consumers avoid housing related scams, such as
mortgage rescue scams, bankruptcy scams, and reverse
mortgage fraud.
Federal Trade Commission. Provides information on new
and ongoing fraud schemes, along with tips to help you
protect yourself.
Internet Crime Complaint Center. A partnership between
the FBI and the National White Collar Crime Center to act
as a depot for Internet related criminal complaints and to
develop, and refer the criminal complaints to federal, state,
local, or international law enforcement and/or regulatory
agencies.
National Council on Aging. Provides information on the
top scams targeting seniors.
Social Security Administration. Provides an online form to
report allegations of fraud, waste, and abuse concerning
Social Security benefits.
U.S. Administration on Aging. Includes resources to
prevent elder abuse.
U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Command. Provides U.S. Bureau of Consular Affairs. Provides information for
Barriers
§The senior may have close ties
or relationships to his/her
abuser which he/she wants to
preserve.
§The senior may be aware and
want to stop the exploitation
and recover his/her assets; but,
he/she is less interested in
punishing the abuser.
§The senior may want to protect
abusive family members,
particularly if the abuser is a
troubled son or daughter.
§Many seniors live alone. This
shields abusers from scrutiny
and insulates victims from
those who can help.
§Some seniors have cognitive
impairments and are
particularly vulnerable to
transfer of property or assets.
§The senior may rely on others
for assistance. His or her
caregiver may have access to
financial information,
documents, and valuables.
§His/her dependency gives
caregivers the opportunity to
influence and control.
§Physical and cognitive
challenges may prevent some
Summary
ØImpact of Issue
ØHistory of Scamming
ØTypes of Scamming
ØIndividual/Family Needs Assistance
ØCorrecting the Issue
ØTeaching Methods/ Strategies
ØAgencies/ Services Available
ØBarriers
STAY
POSITIVE
References
http://www.aarp.org/money/scams-fraud/info-08-2013/protect-your-parents-from-scams.ht
https://www.ncoa.org/economic-security/money-management/scams-security/top-10-scam
http://www.caregiverstress.com/senior-safety/senior-fraud/insurance-fraud/
http://www.money-rates.com/personal-finance/helping-parent-recover-financial-scam.htm
https://www.fbi.gov/scams-safety/fraud/seniors

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Scammin Elderly PP

  • 1. Scamming the elderly Adam, Taylor, Katy &
  • 3. Impact of Issue Physical and emotional impact.  Seniors may recuperate more slowly, and life-threatening illnesses can occur. Inability to recover financially.  If seniors lose income from a financial or real estate scam, robbery or burglary, they often struggle even more if they are living on a fixed income. Loss of independence.   Studies have shown that crime is a catalyst that can bring an end to emotional and financial independence, curtailing the lives and lifespan of seniors. Diminished quality of life.  Inability to recover, worrying about the likelihood that it will happen again and regretting the consequences of that poor decision may drive victims to become reclusive, embarrassed, distressed, and suffer from poor self-confidence.  Vicarious victimization.  The National Center on Elder Abuse identified a phenomenon called "vicarious
  • 4. History of Scamming  Financial scams targeting seniors have become so prevalent that they’re now considered “the crime of the 21st century.”   Why? Because seniors are thought to have a significant amount of money sitting in their accounts.  Financial scams also often go unreported or can be difficult to prosecute, so they’re considered a “low-risk” crime.  However, they’re devastating to many older adults and can leave them in a very vulnerable position with little time to recoup their losses.  It’s not just wealthy seniors who are targeted…Low-income older adults are also at risk of financial abuse. And it’s not always strangers who perpetrate these crimes.  Over 90% of all reported elder abuse is committed by an older person’s own family members, most often their adult children, followed by grandchildren, nieces and nephews, and others.
  • 6. Medical/health insurance scams  Every U.S. citizen or permanent resident over age 65 qualifies for Medicare, so there is rarely any need for a scam artist to go above and beyond to scam an elderly person.  In these types of scams, perpetrators may pose as a Medicare representative to get older people to give them their personal information, or they will provide bogus services for elderly people at makeshift mobile clinics, then use the personal information they provide to bill Medicare and pocket the money.  How to spot the scam:  Check with your state's department of insurance to see if the company is properly licensed. And remember, if it seems too good to be true, it most likely is.  What to do:  If your policy is through an organization, report fraud to someone within the organization. Also, report the fraud to the Federal Trade Commission at FTC.gov and your state's department of insurance.
  • 7. Counterfeit prescription drug scams  Most commonly, counterfeit drug scams operate on the Internet, where seniors increasingly go to find better prices on specialized medications. “This scam is growing in popularity— since 2000, the FDA has investigated an average of 20 such cases per year, up from five a year in the 1990s.”  The danger is that besides paying money for something that will not help a person’s medical condition, victims may purchase unsafe substances that can inflict even more harm. This scam can be as hard on the body as it is on the wallet.  Only buy prescription medications from a safe, reputable source.  If the seller is unfamiliar check with your state board of pharmacy or the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy at www.nabp.net or call 847-391-4406.  When you buy medications online, make sure the seller is properly licensed.  If you believe you have bought a counterfeit drug, report it.  Contact the FDA’s Medwatch program at 1-800-332-1088 or at http://www.fda.gov/medwatch  Know your medications:   If you know the size, shape, color, taste, and side effects of the prescriptions you take, you will more easily identify possible counterfeits. Contact your pharmacist or doctor if you notice anything different about a medication.  Pay attention to packaging:
  • 8. Telemarketing/phone scams THE PIGEON DROP The con artist tells the individual that he/she has found a large sum of money and is willing to split it if the person will make a “good faith”
  • 9. GET INVOLED & HELP PREVENT ELDERLY SCAMMING FROM YOUR
  • 10. Individual/Family Needs Assistance 1. Don't just tell your parent to hang up or throw out the letter.  Have a talk about why. “You can't win a contest you didn't enter, Dad.” “You never have to pay fees to collect lottery winnings, Mom.” Government agencies don't make unsolicited phone calls and never ask for personal information — why would they? They've already got it on file. 2. Don't shame or blame.  Remind them what they taught you decades ago: Don't trust strangers — especially those seeking personal information and money. 3. Try some reverse psychology.  If you become aware that an aged parent is playing a sweepstakes or making a "double your money" investment, ask how you can do the same. Psychologists say this tactic sometimes prompts a warning — your parent doesn't want you to lose money, too. That's your cue to ask, "Then why do you do it?" This could start a conversation that helps the parent come to terms with the scam. 4. Turn them into protectors.
  • 11. Correcting the issue vNever sign blank insurance claim forms. vNever give blanket authorization to a medical provider to bill for services rendered. vAsk your medical providers what they will charge and what you will be expected to pay out-of-pocket. vCarefully review your insurer’s explanation of the benefits statement. Call your insurer and provider if you have questions. vDo not do business with door-to-door or telephone salespeople who tell you that medical services or equipment are free. vGive your insurance/Medicare identification only to those who have provided you with medical services. vKeep accurate records of all health care appointments.
  • 12. Teaching methods/ Strategies Contact financial institutions to flag or freeze accounts. In some situations, such as fraudulent activity on a credit card, the institution may reverse the charges. File a police report. Even if the police decline to take action, the report provides a paper trail to document the fraud and may be helpful in disputing charges or taking future legal action. Order credit reports to look for other suspicious activity. Fraud against seniors is often not an isolated incident, and you can request free credit reports from annualcreditreport.com, the only site authorized by the government to distribute free reports or at their local banks. Review bank accounts, insurance policies, investments and annuities for changes in account ownership or beneficiaries. Rather than taking money while a senior is alive, scammers switch beneficiaries or account ownership so assets will legally transfer to them upon the senior's death. Review wills, trusts and powers of attorney. Watch for changes that may have been made under undue influence. Consider petitioning for guardianship or conservatorship. In instances in which an individual's mental capacity has diminished, the court may appoint a guardian or conservator who then has the power to void future transactions and take control of an individual's finances.
  • 13. Agencies/ Services available AARP. Provides the latest news on financial scams that affect seniors. The Better Business Bureau - Scam Stopper. Provides resources to expose fraudulent schemes. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Provides information about fraudulent financial schemes and offers help to victims of deceptive financial products. Commodity Futures Trading Commission: Provides information to educate consumers and help them avoid fraud in the U.S. futures markets. ElderCare.gov. Connects you to community services for older adults, including legal and financial assistance services.  Federal Bureau of Investigations. Provides information on fraud schemes that use telephones, the Internet, mass mailings, television, radio, and personal contact to swindle consumers. Federal Housing Finance Agency. Includes tips to help consumers avoid housing related scams, such as mortgage rescue scams, bankruptcy scams, and reverse mortgage fraud. Federal Trade Commission. Provides information on new and ongoing fraud schemes, along with tips to help you protect yourself. Internet Crime Complaint Center. A partnership between the FBI and the National White Collar Crime Center to act as a depot for Internet related criminal complaints and to develop, and refer the criminal complaints to federal, state, local, or international law enforcement and/or regulatory agencies. National Council on Aging. Provides information on the top scams targeting seniors. Social Security Administration. Provides an online form to report allegations of fraud, waste, and abuse concerning Social Security benefits. U.S. Administration on Aging. Includes resources to prevent elder abuse. U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Command. Provides U.S. Bureau of Consular Affairs. Provides information for
  • 14. Barriers §The senior may have close ties or relationships to his/her abuser which he/she wants to preserve. §The senior may be aware and want to stop the exploitation and recover his/her assets; but, he/she is less interested in punishing the abuser. §The senior may want to protect abusive family members, particularly if the abuser is a troubled son or daughter. §Many seniors live alone. This shields abusers from scrutiny and insulates victims from those who can help. §Some seniors have cognitive impairments and are particularly vulnerable to transfer of property or assets. §The senior may rely on others for assistance. His or her caregiver may have access to financial information, documents, and valuables. §His/her dependency gives caregivers the opportunity to influence and control. §Physical and cognitive challenges may prevent some
  • 15. Summary ØImpact of Issue ØHistory of Scamming ØTypes of Scamming ØIndividual/Family Needs Assistance ØCorrecting the Issue ØTeaching Methods/ Strategies ØAgencies/ Services Available ØBarriers

Editor's Notes

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