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Teaching Now Living:Part 5 - Beware of Scams Targeted to Elders

Today Ellie received a call at 9am. Assuming it is Charles, a friend she goes to the senior center with she answers the call.

“Hi, do you know who this is?” The voice on the other end says.

Ellie Responds “no.”

“This is me your grandson, don’t you recognize my voice? Maybe not, I was in a car accident and broke my nose and I probably sound funny.”

Ellie responds, “Grant?”

“Yes it is, I went to a classmates funeral in New Jersey and got in a car accident and need some money. Here I will put the lawyer on. “

Then another voice enters the call, “Hello your grandson would like to leave New Jersey and go back to school but needs to settle things. Is there a Walmart near your home?”

Ellie responds “yes but not close”.

”Well we need to you to go to Walmart and Wire $900.00 to Grant so he can leave the state of New Jersey.”

Ellie responds, “I can’t right now, I am waiting for my bus to go to the Sr. Center.” She hangs up and

contacts her son to call Grant and see if he is all right and send him the money.

TIP: When people are in the early stages of Dementia and as the disease progresses, they are at risk to be a victim of a scam. Ellie did not have a grandson who was in a car accident but she did not know that. The person on the other end of the phone took advantage of it when she mentioned a name. Scammers will call with a sad story to make the person want to give money. Encourage you loved one not to give out vital information over the phone. Maybe use a phone answering machine. Consider having family assume bill paying responsibilities and power of attorney, if you feel your loved one is vulnerable. Consider freezing credit cards and consolidating so one person has control.

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