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Elder scams - Consumer Reports
Old 11-09-2015, 03:36 PM   #1
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Elder scams - Consumer Reports

Excellent article. How to Prevent Elder Abuse - Consumer Reports

These scammers make me very very angry - quite a few varieties of scams are outlined in the article. We all need to be alert for the sake of relatives and friends- and unfortunately ourselves.



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Old 11-09-2015, 03:50 PM   #2
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Excellent article. How to Prevent Elder Abuse - Consumer Reports

These scammers make me very very angry - quite a few varieties of scams are outlined in the article. We all need to be alert for the sake of relatives and friends- and unfortunately ourselves.

...
I am agnostic/none, but there should be a special circle of hell for people like that. Then again, the inner portions of Dante's ninth circle may well fit.
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Old 11-09-2015, 03:58 PM   #3
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The saddest part about these stories is the scammed individuals usually don't recover the money that was taken from them. Throwing the criminals in jail is not sufficient restitution for the injured.
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Old 11-09-2015, 04:46 PM   #4
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I only had time to skim the article. I attended an elder abuse seminar a couple years ago (I do taxes for the elderly and wanted to learn something about financial abuse in particular). According to the presenters, more than half of the abuse (physical, financial ....) are perpetrated by family members. They didn't present any data or cite any sources so I don't know if it was true or not.
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Old 11-09-2015, 04:55 PM   #5
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jebmke - The scams in the article were mostly telemarketing but one was an insurance "agent". I think it would be worth you making some copies of this article for your clients just to make them a little bit aware and hopefully alert.

2017ish - I second the motion for a special section in he!! for these scummy b*stards.
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Old 11-09-2015, 06:46 PM   #6
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I am always amazed at the "catfish" stories you hear about on TV shows like Dr. Phil. I will never understand how some guy in India can convince a lady in the U.S. that he is in love with her, wants to marry her but needs money to get to America. We're talking hundreds of thousands of dollars. These poor ladies fall head over heels for the guy's story and then the guy continues to milk them until they are broke. What a scam.
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Old 11-09-2015, 07:03 PM   #7
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I was interested in this story from that Consumer Reports webpage linked above:

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Louise Brown, 68, a retired nurse from Richmond, Vt., met a man through a dating site who charmed her through e-mails and texts. Over six months, he persuaded her to send $60,000 to cover business troubles abroad. The money hasn’t been recovered.
OK, I am 67, which I admit is a year younger than 68. But good heavens! Honestly I simply can't imagine being stupid enough to do something like that, no matter how slick of a con artist this guy was.

I do feel sorry for the older victims of these despicable elder scams.
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Old 11-09-2015, 07:59 PM   #8
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Last week people in our neighborhood started receiving calls from someone alerting us that the IRS was initiating a lawsuit again us. I got three of these calls. I screen my calls on my message machine and didn't talk to the scammers but others did. It's interesting that the word of the scam spread on the neighborhood social networking site Next Door. Most people were concerned that elderly neighbors would fall for it. If you are internet savvy you can usually Google the topic of suspicious calls and determine that they are fraudulent.
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Old 11-09-2015, 10:04 PM   #9
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There was a story on the news tonight about a 67 year old priest who received a letter in the mail saying he had won $1.5 million in the publishers clearing house sweepstakes. All he had to do to claim the prize was pay the taxes of $40k. He actually gave them the money, most of his life savings, and he lost it all.
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Old 11-09-2015, 10:09 PM   #10
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There was a story on the news tonight about a 67 year old priest who received a letter in the mail saying he had won $1.5 million in the publishers clearing house sweepstakes. All he had to do to claim the prize was pay the taxes of $40k. He actually gave them the money, most of his life savings, and he lost it all.
I'd like to see somebody try that with ME. They'd have law enforcement breathing down their neck so fast it wouldn't even be funny.

I wonder if these people are mentally disabled from strokes or other physical problems. Otherwise I don't think that a normal, healthy 67-year-old would be any more likely to fall for these scams than a 35-year-old.
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Old 11-09-2015, 10:11 PM   #11
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Last week people in our neighborhood started receiving calls from someone alerting us that the IRS was initiating a lawsuit again us. I got three of these calls. I screen my calls on my message machine and didn't talk to the scammers but others did. It's interesting that the word of the scam spread on the neighborhood social networking site Next Door. Most people were concerned that elderly neighbors would fall for it. If you are internet savvy you can usually Google the topic of suspicious calls and determine that they are fraudulent.
I also screen calls and have had similar calls. Clues that they're scams are slight accents and imperfect phraseology. Of course, the whole idea of getting such a call is a big clue. Still, it sets even a skeptic like me back briefly until I Google it.
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Old 11-09-2015, 10:15 PM   #12
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There are a number of business out there these days to help elders and family member monitor and manage finances. Basically, they have limits and triggers on banking and credit card transactions. So, for instance, and elder doesn't make a foolish purchase during late night TV advertisements. The idea is to protect elders without making them feel like they are losing their independence. Loss of independence is part of what is behind the shame of admitting that they are being taken advantage of.
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Old 11-10-2015, 07:00 AM   #13
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Excellent article. How to Prevent Elder Abuse - Consumer Reports

These scammers make me very very angry - quite a few varieties of scams are outlined in the article. We all need to be alert for the sake of relatives and friends- and unfortunately ourselves.



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Makes me wonder how some people could look themselves in the mirror or sleep at night.
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Old 11-10-2015, 07:52 AM   #14
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Makes me wonder how some people could look themselves in the mirror or sleep at night.
Not trying to defend the scammers, of course, but they probably look at it, collectively across all of the individual thefts, as stealing from a very wealthy country. But yeah, if there only was a specially brutal hell to put these b*stards in!
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Old 11-10-2015, 08:02 AM   #15
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I was shocked to hear that my mother (69 y.o. at the time) fell for the "grandchild needs money to get out of jail" scam. Someone called, mentioned my nephews name, and indicated that nephew was being held and grandma needed to send a money order to get him released. It's not a stretch to think that said nephew would get in a bind and depend on grandma to bail him out. Luckily, mom wasn't sure where to go to get a money order, so asked dad, and he realized it was a scam and no money was sent.

I was surprised that my mother fell for it, because she always seems skeptical about things. She's also usually very careful with her money.
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Old 11-10-2015, 08:04 AM   #16
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Not trying to defend the scammers, of course, but they probably look at it, collectively across all of the individual thefts, as stealing from a very wealthy country. But yeah, if there only was a specially brutal hell to put these b*stards in!
I totally agree. I'm sure those b*stards look at the situation as a way to get money without conscious of ruining someone's life.
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Old 11-10-2015, 08:14 AM   #17
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I wouldn't be surprised if they also tell themselves their old victims have little life left, so not as bad as stealing from younger people.

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Not trying to defend the scammers, of course, but they probably look at it, collectively across all of the individual thefts, as stealing from a very wealthy country. But yeah, if there only was a specially brutal hell to put these b*stards in!
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Old 11-10-2015, 08:19 AM   #18
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The type of people who scam others - be they old, young or any age - don't have any moral compass. They don't bother rationalizing what they do, they just go after the money.
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Old 11-10-2015, 08:28 AM   #19
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The type of people who scam others - be they old, young or any age - don't have any moral compass. They don't bother rationalizing what they do, they just go after the money.
+1

Predators and sociopaths. The real dregs of society, they prey on the most vulnerable.
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Old 11-10-2015, 08:36 AM   #20
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I was shocked to hear that my mother (69 y.o. at the time) fell for the "grandchild needs money to get out of jail" scam. Someone called, mentioned my nephews name, and indicated that nephew was being held and grandma needed to send a money order to get him released. It's not a stretch to think that said nephew would get in a bind and depend on grandma to bail him out. Luckily, mom wasn't sure where to go to get a money order, so asked dad, and he realized it was a scam and no money was sent.

I was surprised that my mother fell for it, because she always seems skeptical about things. She's also usually very careful with her money.
The same thing happened to my Dad last week. He took $7,800 out of his Fidelity account and wired it to another bank account, supposedly to bail out my niece who'd been arrested because she'd been driving around with friends and the friends were caught with drugs on them. He and my mother are in their mid-80s. The money doesn't concern me (Mom said it probably just means we'll all inherit less when they go) as much as the fact that Dad fell for it. He seems to be doing well mentally, he's always handled the finances, and we talk about investing all the time. We'll be visiting over Christmas and I'm going to take a close look at how Dad is doing.

The weird thing is, someone tried to pull this scam on Mom a few years ago. They claimed to be DS, who'd gotten in trouble because he got drunk at a bachelor party and was arrested. Mom knew it was a scam because DS doesn't touch alcohol. You'd think Dad would have remembered that. I'm still not sure how the scammers ever connected DS with my parents. DS isn't on FaceBook. I kept my last name but DS' last name is different (his father's surname). We all live in different states. It's scary out there.
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