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Every year, thieves target individuals to get access to their personal information and money, and they tend to zero in on older people. Seniors lose more than $3 billion to fraud each year, according to the FBI. If you haven’t yet been approached by a scammer, you could face a scheme in the coming years. Sometimes family members, especially relatives caring for the elderly, are even the ones behind the attack.

Some of the most common senior scams include:

  • Charity scams.
  • Funeral scams.
  • Government imposter scams.
  • Grandparent scams.
  • Internet scams.
  • Investment scams.
  • Medicare scams.
  • Reverse mortgage scams.
  • Romance scams.
  • Sweepstakes scams.

Here’s a breakdown of how these elderly scams work, along with what to do to avoid falling prey to an attack.

Charity Scams

If there’s a hurricane or other natural disaster in your area, a criminal might call you and ask for donations to a nonprofit that is working to rebuild the region or help needy families. They will often want your bank account or credit card details, which they can use to access your funds. Don’t agree to give to charities over the phone or when first approached. Instead, investigate the organization and find a number to call if you are interested in giving a donation.

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