The digital world has made it easier than ever for scammers to steal information and take advantage of unknowing victims. Most people understand that they should avoid phishing emails and telemarketing calls. But, there is one group in society that often falls prey to these scams: seniors.
Older Adults are Often Targets for Financial Abuse
The two primary reasons that scammers target older adults are naiveté, and the fact that seniors often possess hefty retirement accounts. Overall, this demographic is much less aware of the dangers of financial exploitation.
Compounding this are:
- Physical Frailty: People confined to bed have less mobility. They are less likely to notice if money goes missing. In-home caretakers or family members can easily steal something without them knowing.
- Cognitive Impairment: Aging can increase the risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s. This reduction in cognitive ability can increase the risk of the person making a poor financial decision. Scammers are looking for older adults who can be easily manipulated.
- Loneliness: Those missing relationships with family members may be more inclined to engage in conversations with potential scammers. Financial fraud can also occur when the senior is trying to do something good for others. For example, scammers can take advantage of the person’s loneliness by encouraging them to make donations. The senior thinks that they are helping orphans or paying for an adopted pet, but the scammer takes the money for themselves.
All forms of elder abuse, including financial abuse, can occur to people of all ethnicities, socioeconomic status, and health conditions. Studies show that women are at a higher risk of becoming victims.
As a family member, it is important to watch for potential signs of abuse. Preventive measurements can be used to reduce the risk to your loved ones. If you want more information about protecting your elderly family members, then we invite you to contact us anytime. Email info@SeniorSafeAndSound.org or call 858-480-7551. Senior Safe and Sound.