It's a sad reality that many seniors are often victims of scams in their retirement. One survey from MetLife noted that such financial scams cost an estimated $2.6 billion annually, USA Today reported
Here are five of the most-popular scams perpetuated against seniors.
Many seniors fall prey to fake charities seeking money. Moved by stories of loss or want, they donate their meager retirement funds to help someone who doesn't exist, USA Today said. Sadly, often these scams occur during the holidays.
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2. Grandchild in Crisis
Often seniors get a phone call telling them that their grandchildren are in trouble and need help. "They are crying. It is someone posing as the grandchildren. They are saying they are in a foreign country. You wire them money, and then try to get them to wire more," Angela Byers, financial crimes section chief for the Federal Bureau of Investigation, told USA Today.
She added: "They'll know just enough information that they get from Facebook and other social media websites, such as where the grandkids live, where they are vacationing or other personal details, and use this information to get (the senior) to open up. If the scammer is calling from a cellphone with bad reception or a Bluetooth, it's not always easy to decipher and know it's not the relative."
3. Health Care
Often scammers get personal information and then call seniors telling them that they have spoken with their relatives and divulging more is fine, according to Bankrate
Often, Bankrate noted, citing the National Council on Aging, the scammers use personal data they get from unsuspecting retirees to bill Medicare and then keep the windfall.
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4. Financial Scams
There are many so-called financial advisers who offer to help struggling seniors get high returns on their money. Once they turn it over for investment, the advisers pocket it for themselves, Bankrate noted.
5. Prescription Drug Savings
Bankrate reported that the FDA has cracked down on about 20 cases each year since 2000 of companies promising lower-cost drugs for seniors who face high prescription costs.
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