Protecting Seniors from ID Theft

Thanks to a recent post on Fraud, we would like to share information to help our community look after what appears to be among our most vulnerable population: our senior citizens. According to the FBI Internet Crime Complaint Center, seniors are targets for countless forms of fraud, ranging from simple home repair scams, to more complex investment and insurance fraud. Perpetrators include family, friends, neighbors, caregivers, financial advisors and strangers.

Opportunists see the “golden years” as primetime to rob all the savings and good credit seniors spent a lifetime accumulating. Make sure the seniors in your life are made of aware of the following top scams:
• Work from Home – Jobs listed in newspapers, online job sites, emails and social networking sites, promising jobs to seniors as “money transfer agents” abroad.
• Government Official Impersonation – Scams range from fraudsters purporting to be from the FBI, Social Security, Medicare or other federal agencies all demanding money.
• Loan Intimidation – Phone calls or emails threatening arrest or legal action for delinquent loans. These often target personal information used to commit identity theft.
• Romance – Taking advantage of lonely hearts, scammers will claim personal hardship and the need for financial help.
• Auto Auctions – Fraudsters advertise vehicles at “too good to be true” prices. This scam uses a “must sell quickly” tactic and demands full or partial payment through a third party.

If you or an older adult you know is being subjected to financial elder abuse, visit the National Center on Elder Abuse (NCEA) for a list of state reporting telephone numbers to get help. Contact your financial institution to report the fraud. File a police report, especially if personal and confidential details were provided, such as social security numbers, which could be used to commit identity theft. If you believe there is immediate physical danger, contact 911.

For more id theft resources, please visit

by HV Shred