6 Tips on Avoiding Senior Citizen Fraud

One of the first things that may come to your mind when thinking why the elders have resulted to be the most endangered generation from senior citizen fraud online is because they have lost their memories or they do not have any other obligation that is waiting for them at the end of the month. And this is true for most of them.
senior citizen fraud

However, we all know that those born in the 1930s, 1940s, or 1950s have wonderfully been raised and educated on trust and being polite. Virtues these that, unfortunately, have started to fade away with the newer generations.

This type of education and personality they have been raised to carry with hardly leaves room to simply hang up the phone or say “no” even to a stranger offering them a service or “special offer”.

“Where honey is, their bees will gather” – Con artists know that and this is what makes senior citizens of any country an attractive target to them.

Today I will show you 5 reasons why the elders are endangered by various fraudulent activities and what makes them an attractive target to the scam artists, followed by tips for them to avoid con artists. Let’s get straight into it!

5 Reasons Why Senior Citizens are Endangered by Con Artists

The list of the reasons why senior citizens are endangered by fraudulent activities contains more than just the financial capabilities or the saves most of the elders have in this stage of the life. There are a few others behind it but are not be considered least in any way. The list includes:

Polite and Trustworthy – The way they were raised, respectful towards others and trustworthy, makes them a preferred target and one that is not very hard to reel in because of their mild personality and con artists make sure to use to their wrong purposes.

“The nest egg” – The idea of having a “nest egg”, which means to own a house and have a well-balanced bank account is tempting to any of us, however, older generations tend to top the list. Coming to some of the latest stages of their lives, it is pretty obvious they can hardly work for any income and any offer of making a large sum of money with a way or another doesn’t go unheard from them even if voiced by a stranger.

Whether they want to fulfill their wish of buying their children or grandchildren a gift, treat their friends, or simply want to go in a long vacation to renew their strengths, money is never too much or too late. No doubt that it be used in any stage of life and this is a fact that gets well into use by con artists to get them deceived with the same promises. And that’s all there is, a promise. And so it remains.

Not reporting – If there is a worse thing than a senior citizen getting scammed is the same to not report it to the respective authorities or contact a lawyer. And this is a sad truth that embraces the fact that a very small number of senior citizens actually do so, while the same tend to report a fraudulent activity only long after it had taken place, long enough for the authorities to lose track of the fraud and have no real signs left to catch him.

In addition to that, the victim can hardly help them anymore as they have it hard to recall the exact details of the event because of the age, while there are a lot of others who actually don’t know how to actually submit a complaint. 3 most common reasons why senior citizens don’t report fraudulent activities are:

  • They are not aware how and where to report a fraud.
  • Don’t know whether they have been scammed in the first place and tend to realize it later than they should.
  • Are too ashamed to tell that they have fallen prey to a scam so their family and peers won’t think they  havestarted to lose memory or reason.

Poor witnesses – Older people are not well-known to be witnesses of a crime or fraud because of their effect of age in their memory and can be hardly relied on to supply detailed information to the investigators, which leaves the latter on a hard job over a much longer period on their own if they are to chase after the fraudulent. Time this that could be cut if the investigators had got the exact details on the matter, obviously.

Health supplements – Another strong reason which puts older people in the list of the most endangered generations on scam artists’ radar are the medical supplements, which promise various unreal effects on the face wrinkles, anti-cancer, heart condition or body in general.

Products these, which can be found every very and every time you open your online shop. Living in an era where there is ALMOST always a vaccination or cure for the old diseases has given hope to everyone, and mostly to the older generations, for a longer and healthier life.

And con artists, unfortunately, have gathered like bees to the honey. Making senior citizens of countries like the US,

UK, Canada or Australia an attractive target. One of the well-known methods they use to do so is by a telemarketing phone call. Below, I have made a list of Top 5 most infamous offers fraudulent are using to grab the attention of their victims.

6 Tips on How to Avoid Senior Citizen Fraud

Most of the scams online can be avoided by simply paying a little more attention to the offer you have received or do a little research before deciding to buy an item or agree to a service online or in-person, the same is applicable to any group of people who want to protect themselves from fraud and so does to senior citizens.

Elderly couple

The other day I have written an article on how to avoid scams online and most of the ways to do so are very useful to apply to any type of scams, however, below I made a simplified list of 6 most remarkable ways how to avoid scams, especially on the older generations.

  1. Do not hesitate to hand up the phone to a stranger who offers you a “way-too-good” offer.
  2. Do not accept to talk to any marketing company after 7 PM. A marketing company is not allowed to make phone calls after that time by the law.
  3. Beware of free offers that require delivery charges. They are scams and you end up paying more than the actual product’s price.
  4. Keep calm and do not rush to make a decision to buy something from a company or individual you don’t know.
  5. Talk with a family member or a relative whenever you find something suspicious on any of the offers you may receive.
  6. Falling prey of a scam does not in any way mean something is wrong with you. Statistics on people getting scammed daily are not a new thread and no age or group of people make an exception. Do not hesitate to report a fraudulent activity or ask the help of a family member to do so.

The article is particularly written to bring awareness to the older generation on the risks they may encounter when using the internet, however, any of us can be part of the statistics and none is safe from fraudulent activity. The fraudulent will not save you, either. What you can do is, protect yourself.

And if you found this article helpful to you, make sure you share it with your family and friends to help them, as well.

Know your enemy“, don’t fall for the scams online.

4 Replies to “6 Tips on Avoiding Senior Citizen Fraud”

  • Heku a great article I am familiar with this type of approach, my grandmother used to get scam calls all the time. She took a radical strategy of blowing a whistle down the phone if they kept calling back – this was back in the day when the ‘Do not call’ register wasn’t around here in Australia. But a great article to raise awareness and for those of us with older generations at home to check in with them to see if they are receiving these types of calls or offers.

    • Hey Fleur!

      The idea of blowing a whistle down the phone made me laugh hard yet at the same time that is a creative idea to do with some strangers that keep calling you. We got a lot to learn from our elders, don’t we?

      It is true that nowadays there are some more rules regarding marketing calls and thus raising the security of the customers, however, scam calls are still evident and we have to protect ourselves. Thank you for your comment and I am happy you found this article helpful, and also I am happy to hear that your grandmother didn’t fall for it.


  • Hi, and thanks for the reminder.

    I’m not that old yet but as you say, any age and anywhere scams are present.

    Here in Thailand we still have a lot of sellers driving up the street with their products in the car. They then start talking to elderly people and try to sell them stuff with a downpayment.

    Most often you never see the salesperson again but only the guys collecting the money. The products are mostly of cheap quality and break before being paid off.

    • Hey Stefan!

      I absolutely agree with you that fraudulent activities are not only happening on the internet, they are evident everyday around us as well and the good news because the same ways can help you keep yourself safe on the internet or outside of it. It is sad that kind of scheme is pretty common on Asian countries and most of African countries. I pray you never fall for it. Thanks a lot for sharing your experience with us, as it can help a lot others.


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