Seeing them as ‘easy marks’, many scam artists target the elderly in a disturbing trend that seems to be on the rise:
A 2011 MetLife Mature Market Institute review of research and news reports estimated elderly victims lose at least $2.9billion annually from fraud, up 12 percent from 2008. Fraud perpetrated by strangers accounted for 51percent of reported cases, followed by fraud committed by family, friends and neighbors, which accounted for 34 percent. A 2010 study by the non-profit group Investor Protection Trust said about 7million Americans over 65, or 1 in 5, have lost money from fraud schemes.
The most common scams, according to the FBI, are:
- Health Insurance Fraud
- Counterfeit Prescription Drugs
- Funeral and Cemetery Fraud
- Telemarketing Fraud
- Internet Fraud
- Investment Schemes
For more information about how to fight scams and fraud, the FBI and AARP have additional information and resources. You can use Osborn Digital Solution’s communication tools to spread the word, informing your residents and their families about the proper steps to take to minimize risk.