Did you know that elder financial abuse has gone up over the past few years? One study estimates that 37 percent of all seniors have experienced financial abuse—that’s up 17 percent from a 2014 study! So, what’s causing this increase? Our Georgia elder abuse attorneys have some ideas.
Are More Seniors Becoming Victims of Financial Abuse?
The population of seniors in this country is climbing, which is also affecting the number of people falling victim to elder financial abuse. Criminals are taking advantage of the wider pool of victims, but they are also using the changing times to victimize seniors.
When this new generation of seniors was younger, they didn’t have to worry about robo calls and phone scammers. Almost all of these old phone calls were from a friend or family members, but times have changed. Scammers are calling and pretending to be IRS representatives, utility companies, and tech support agents. Microsoft estimates that more than $1.5 billion was lost to tech support scams last year, but there are ways to protect yourself.
Protecting Seniors from Financial Abuse
- Don’t Give Out Your Personal Info– You shouldn’t give out your Social Security number, credit card number or other sensitive information to just anyone on the phone. Call companies directly to confirm they are trying to contact you, and don’t just trust voicemail messages asking for your information.
- Ignore E-mails Asking for Info– Just like phone scammers, internet scammers are also searching for a way to get your personal info. This includes impersonating companies you do business with. So, check with those companies, and don’t volunteer your info.
- Look Out for Local Scams– Knowing what’s going on in your neck of the woods can help you identify when someone is trying to scam you. Check out this AARP Fraud Map to learn more about the scams in your area.
There are even more ways to protect yourself or your loved ones from all sorts of elder abuse. Head over to our Facebook and Twitter for more tips, and keep following our blog for the latest helpful news.