There are few things as despicable as people who prey on the elderly. Unfortunately, with the advances in technology, that ugly underbelly of society is growing. There was a time when all a person had to worry about was having their purse or wallet stolen, or maybe corrupt contractors or handymen doing shoddy work. But now, with electronic money transfers and identity theft, there is no limit to the ways a criminal can take advantage of a trusting heart.
What makes the crime even worse is that so many elderly people do not report these incidents. Sometimes, they feel ashamed that they have been taken advantage of. It can make them feel stupid and make them wonder if it would have happened to someone younger. There is also some confusion about the process of reporting the crime, to whom you report it, where, how, etc. And on occasion, the person doesn’t even realize they have been scammed.
By making the topic of scams part of the conversation with your loved one, it can not only help make them aware of the frauds that may pop up, but it will also open up the lines of communication so that maybe some of the shame is taken out of the equation. Every person has felt taken advantage of at some point in their life. By talking about this open and honestly with your elderly loved one, perhaps it will make them more likely to come to you if they suspect they have been the victim of a scam.
In a technologically borderless world, it doesn’t matter how great the people are in your town. Some creep from ten thousand miles away can find your number or email. The best defense a person has is being able to spot these con artists so as to avoid them altogether. But if the worst happens, knowing you have a loving and non-judgmental person in your corner can certainly help soften the blow to both your ego and checkbook.