How to Avoid Scams Aimed Towards Seniors: Tips from a Home Care Company in Covington, TN
Comfort Keepers Home Care in Covington, TN has some helpful tips on avoiding senior scams and protecting your loved one.
Seniors are often the target of scams. However, being aware of these scams and educating seniors about them can make them less susceptible. Here are a few of the common scams our home care company has noticed targeted toward seniors - and how you can spot them.
Insurance scams are very common. Perpetrators will pose as a health insurance representative (most commonly Medicare) and ask for personal information. If your loved one gets a call like this, they should hang up and then directly call their health insurance representative in order to verify if the call was legitimate.
Prescription drug scams are most often found online. Your loved one may come across an advertisement or an email offering low prices on their medications. The scammer will take your senior’s credit card information, and either never send the prescription or send fake medications, which can cause health issues. Only purchase prescription drugs from pharmacies or well-known, vetted online pharmacies.
Relative In Need scams
In these scams, our home care company has noticed that the scammer pretends to be a relative - oftentimes a grandchild - who claims to need money for a sudden financial emergency. They will often ask your senior to not tell anyone about the money and will ask for payment through Western Union or MoneyGram. These payment methods do not tend to require identification for someone to collect the money. If your senior gets a call like this, urge them to contact the relative directly to find out whether they’re being scammed or whether there is a real need. More likely than not, it’s a scam.
Seniors may see advertisements or pop-ups that ask them to download fake anti-virus software. These software downloads can install a keylogger onto your senior’s computer, which will allow the scammer access to personal information. Advise your loved one not to click on these ads, and if they need anti-virus software on their computer, to get it from a reputable website.
They may also get emails that appear to be from a legitimate company asking them to update their information. These scammers commonly pose as a bank or as the IRS. If your loved one gets an email like this, it’s best to delete it and contact the bank or company directly to see if anything needs to be updated. You can oftentimes look at the email address the email was sent from - it won’t always match up to the actual company’s email address.
At Comfort Keepers Home Care Company, our caregivers can help your loved one watch out for these scams. We can screen calls or check emails for your senior to prevent them from falling for a scam. We can also teach your loved one to spot the signs of a scam.