There are several commonly used phone scams being used on seniors. Enterprises TV wishes to share information about the scams and offer suggestions about how to avoid getting trapped.
Phone shysters know how to play the heartstrings of the elderly and do so often. Below are some of the common ploys they pull:
The Grandparent Scam – They call using the name of one of your grandchildren and say they are in a legal situation or having a medical problem and need the senior to wire money to them.
What you need to know: The best way to avoid sending funds to this caller is to ask them something personal about themselves that only the senior knows. Or, if the call does not sound like one of the grandkids or sounds fishy, hang up.
The Jury Duty Scam – The caller says you were supposed to be on jury duty but didn’t show up so an arrest warrant is issued to bring you to jail unless you pay them the fine by wire transfer or on a prepaid credit card.
What you need to know: If this sounds scary, hang up and call the police and ask them if such a thing can happen. They will say no.
The IRS Scam – Someone calls saying they are from the IRS and that you owe money on back taxes. If you don’t pay by wire transfer or prepaid card, they will send a police officer to arrest you.
What you need to know – Hang up. Most people know if they owe anything on overdue taxes or not. If you do not know, hang up and call your tax attorney, or a family member.
The Utility Scam – Someone calls you and says they are from the local utility company. You bill is very overdue and if you do not pay them via money transfer or prepaid credit card, your electricity/gas will be shut off.
What you need to know: Hang up and call the customer service number for the utility and ask them if they make calls like that. They will say no.
Enterprises TV encourages readers to share this information with elderly parents and loved ones in their lives.