Scams targeting aging adults are getting more creative. According to Amy Nofziger, AARP’s director of fraud victim support, “Scammers stay on top of whatever is new, such as the popularity of Zoom, Covid-19 vaccines, and online shopping. They then move fast to create ploys that best fit the moment.”
No one wants to see an aging loved one become the victim of fraud. It is essential that you are aware of potential scams and make sure the aging adult in your life does not fall victim to one. Here are a few of the top scams currently targeting aging adults:
Fake Online Shopping Websites
These online shops look more accurate today than ever since they use photos from real online shops. The scammers copy the original site’s look to trick your loved one into believing they are buying things from their favorite site. They are left without any items being delivered or a lower quality item being delivered. If your loved one has a website, they enjoy shopping from, advise them to check the online reviews or the Better Business Bureau’s online directory to ensure the site is legitimate.
Scam Text Messages
In this scam scenario, the fraudsters are texting aging adults urgent messages claiming something is wrong with their bank account, credit card, or phone service. They are then asking for personal information such as account numbers, social security numbers, pin codes, or more so they can steal your loved one’s identity. Many aging adults do not expect scams to come from text messages, but it has become one of the most popular ways for scammers to target these communities.
Fake Prescription Drugs
Aging adults consume about one-third of all prescription drugs in the United States. Your aging loved one could receive an email claiming that a company can offer them their medicine at a lower price. The people sending these emails often try to get your loved one’s insurance information and credit card number. They then will send placebo pills. Also, many pharmacies now offer drop-off services. Your loved one needs to be sure they trust their pharmacy, many pharmacies will not replace your loved one’s medicine if it is not delivered, yet this primarily pertains to medicine that is a controlled substance. Regardless, make sure your aging loved one is vigilant about going through their doctors for their medicine, and if they cannot pick up their medicine on their own, they need to send someone they trust.
These are just a few of the scams out there today. It is highly beneficial if you keep watch over aging adults to ensure they avoid being taken advantage of.