You are not alone if you have ever fallen victim to a scam. Scammers use a calculated strategy and some of them make it their full-time job to make money this way. They often imitate legitimate government institutions or companies, and they use fear to hinder you from thinking clearly. If you believe them, it’s not your fault, but it’s helpful to be aware of them. This is especially true for seniors who live alone or full adult children who help take care of their elderly parents.
When you know the latest scams, you can help teach your seniors how to avoid them better. When a senior lives alone, they may have help from home care that will also ensure a senior is staying safe. Keep in mind that although home care can help a senior with chores and daily living it can still be hard to control a senior’s actions. Therefore, seniors must understand what a scam is most likely. Here are a few of the latest scams to be aware of.
Believe it or not, covid-19 went through the world in more than one way. It not only made people very sick, but it also created scams that are incredibly believable to even those who are not seniors. When you share a photo of your immunization card online, cybercriminals get personal information that they may use to steal your identity and access your bank accounts. If you like, inform people about your immunization without showing a picture of the card.
Zoom Scams or Video Chat Scams
You get an email or other notification with a Zoom link requesting that you join a meeting or repair an issue. Avoid links to meetings for which you have not registered. Sign into your Zoom account via the website if you suspect an issue with your account, rather than clicking the link. This has been another scam that has become a huge trend due to covid-19.
IRS Imposter Scam
This is an older scam but still very relevant when it comes to scamming senior citizens. Scammers contact a senior and claim there is an issue with their Social Security number or that it has been used in illicit activities. They may ask you to confirm the number, make threats, and/or demand payment to resolve the issue. An alternative is a con artist claiming you owe money to the IRS and threatening you. Avoid taking calls from unfamiliar numbers and be aware that neither the Social Security Administration nor the Internal Revenue Service will threaten you or suspend your Social Security number.
Tech Team Calls
Scammers employ pop-up online messages or phone calls to claim you have a virus or other computer issue. They want remote access to the computer and demand payment to fix the “issue.” Do not put your faith in anybody who approaches you about a computer issue. Close any dubious pop-ups and use a reputable anti-virus application. If you do not know how to accomplish this, contact a relative or close friend for assistance, or locate a trustworthy computer service on your own.