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Preventing 9 Common Scams and Frauds Targeting Seniors

Seniors are becoming increasingly vulnerable to various types of scams and fraudulent activities. These schemes often target seniors due to their perceived vulnerability, isolation, and potentially diminished cognitive abilities. The consequences of falling victim to a scam can be devastating, resulting in financial loss, emotional distress, and even physical harm.

In this article, we will explore some of the most common types of scams and fraudulent activities that often target seniors, and provide tips on how to protect yourself or your loved ones from falling prey to these schemes. From identity theft and healthcare fraud to investment scams and sweepstakes scams, we will cover a range of tactics used by scammers to exploit seniors and offer practical advice on how to avoid them. By staying informed and taking the necessary precautions, seniors can protect themselves from these scams and enjoy their golden years with peace of mind.

Types of Scams and Fraudulent Activities that Often Target Seniors

Scammers and fraudsters frequently prey on seniors, viewing them as susceptible and potentially easy targets. They employ a range of tactics to deceive seniors, including identity theft, investment fraud, and healthcare scams. Here we present types of scams that seniors may encounter, providing insight into how they operate:

Identity theft

Identity theft is a prevalent scam that frequently targets seniors. Scammers obtain personal information, such as Social Security numbers, and use it to create fraudulent credit accounts or make unauthorized charges. 

According to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), in 2020, there were over 4.7 million reports of identity theft, with people over the age of 50 being the most vulnerable group. Additionally, according to the 2021 Identity Fraud Study by Javelin Strategy & Research, seniors aged 65 and older lost $1.8 billion to identity theft in 2020, a 62% increase from the previous year. These statistics highlight the importance of seniors being vigilant about protecting their personal information and monitoring their credit reports to avoid becoming victims of identity theft.

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