Protecting Ourselves from Robocalls
Posted on: 05 August 2020 by Anna Thompson
The sad truth is that people over fifty are prime targets for both robocalls and phone scams. So learning how to protect ourselves is vital in this situation.
We tend to live alone, not get the latest on the phone scams that are circling and simply have a higher level of trust in everything that we are being presented with. That is simply the state of affairs. And as we get older the risk increases. The sad fact of the matter is that scammers target the elderly, as they may be lonely, willing to listen, and are, as we have already stated more trusting than younger individuals.
Numerous frauds and schemes against the elderly are performed over the telephone, door-to-door, or through advertisements. The reason for that is quite simple, the elderly are prime targets for sweepstakes or contest schemes along with being the best option for fake charities, health products, magazines, home improvements, equity skimming, investments, banking, or wire transfers, and insurance. As you can see there is a lot to choose from for the scammers and that is why it is essential that we stay on top of everything.
The scams we should be on the lookout for
This is the first step towards a higher level of protection. Getting to know what is out there and how to recognize scammers. Sometimes you can figure it out straight away sometimes it is ala bout asking the right questions.
As we all know the COVID 19 world health pandemic has affected us all, and everyone is more anxious and, well, tired, and people over fifty, being the endangered group are far more scared and thus more susceptible targets to scammers. The CDC scam is one of the major ones currently going around. The premise is quite simple, scammers spoof CDC phone numbers so that it seems like this government agency is calling you so that we are more likely to answer.
Something similar is happening with the IRS and even Pentagon numbers. Well, even if you answer keep in mind that all agencies have issued statements clearly stating that they will not call to demand immediate payment using a specific payment method such as a prepaid debit card, gift card, or wire transfer. Generally, in the case of the IRS, they will first mail a bill to any taxpayer who owes taxes. So you can feel far more comfortable hanging up.
Make sure you check who’s calling you
This is as important as knowing about popular scams. Scammers who prey on the elderly usually say they are members of the family who are in trouble and are asking for wire transfers or other means of payment. Well, the best thing to do is just hang up, use a trusted reverse phone lookup search, and check the number they are calling from. It takes just a few moments and you will quickly have all the information on the caller.
As an additional step, you can contact relatives close to the person that was calling to ask about their current situation, which will give you additional information. Using older people just because they are lonely and trusting is one of the worst crimes, so if you catch someone doing it don’t hesitate to report them.
You can also feel comfortable just hanging up and checking up on the caller. It is a lot easier to call someone back than it is to get the money back once they have stolen it from you. Our days of trusting people are long gone and it is high time to get vigilant, even as we age.
So just remember…
You are not getting older, you are leveling up. So should your phone skills. Yes, we have the youngster lingo going! By all joking aside, at a time like this being able to protect ourselves is of vital importance and since there are so many tools at our disposal there is simply no reason not to. So stay on top of the latest happenings and make sure you verify who is on the other side of the line before committing to provide any payment or personal information.