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NCJ Number: 191785 Find in a Library
Title: Protecting the Elderly: Inform Your Senior Citizens About Con Artists
Journal: Law and Order  Volume:49  Issue:4  Dated:April 2001  Pages:102-106
Author(s): Tony L. Jones
Date Published: April 2001
Page Count: 5
Type: Instructional Material
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article offers suggestions for how senior citizens may prevent being victimized by various types of fraudulent schemes, and recommends that police agencies create informational programs that can aid the elderly in identifying and combating such schemes operating in their communities.
Abstract: Telemarketing frauds are primarily conducted by telephone and typically include gemstone sales, offshore lotteries, advance fee loans, or credit card scams. Police officers should warn senior citizens to always check their phone bills and contest any service charges or unknown calls immediately; and senior citizens should be instructed to never provide credit card numbers, social security numbers, or other personal information to anyone over the phone, unless a trusted business relationship exists or the citizen has initiated the call. Also, across the Nation people have been victimized by predatory lending, which consists of targeting the elderly with substantial equity but less-than-perfect credit for high-cost abusive loans. Identity theft is another problem for the elderly. It involves the unauthorized acquisition and use of a person's identity and personal information for the purpose of defrauding the financial services industry. The identity thief steals a person's personal data and uses or attempts to use it to establish credit lines only the thief can access. Further, police officers should advise seniors to be wary when using the Internet and ATM machines and to never provide their social security numbers or account passwords unless a trusted business relationship exists. This article also provides information on fraudulent home repair schemes and tactics commonly used for residential burglaries.
Main Term(s): Police crime-prevention
Index Term(s): Crime specific countermeasures; Crimes against the elderly; Elderly victims; Fraud; Fraud and abuse prevention measures
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