Scams can seem very real. It’s not surprising that so many people fall for a scam. One senior shares the story of a scam she received. Use this as an example when teaching your parent how to determine if a call, letter, or email is a scam or not.
The Tax Bill Looked Official
In this scam, the senior received a bill from another state. The logo looked authentic when compared to the town and state’s website. The print quality was exceptional, and it was done on quality letterhead. Plus, the postmark matched the town and state.
The bill said she owed taxes on a boat. The taxes were overdue as they should have been paid in January. It was now June. She didn’t own a boat, so her first fear was of identity theft. As it was a Saturday, she couldn’t do anything until Monday.
She called her son who looked up the number printed on the bill and it matched the town and city. He looked at the address. That was the one issue he found. It was a P.O. box rather than a street address, but that wasn’t enough to convince him this was definitely a scam.
Monday came around and she called the clerk for the town on the bill. That clerk told her it was a scam. The town didn’t use a P.O. box. Had the woman paid the taxes without questioning anything, she would have given the scammer a few hundred dollars. Plus, if she’d paid with a personal check, the scammer would have had her checking account number and routing number.
Help Your Parent Research Every Detail
When your parent gets a call, email, or letter, help them research every detail. Scrutinize the address, phone number, and bill itself. If you’re not sure, don’t call the number on the bill, look up the number for that agency and call the main line. You may need to be transferred, but it’s better than calling the number on a fake bill and getting scammed.
If your parents do get a scam bill or call, have them forward information to the FTC. They should also report it to local authorities. The only way scammers get caught is if people continue to report them and give information that can help authorities find them.
Caregivers can help your parents safely age at home. By hiring a caregiver, you make sure your parents have help with household chores. There’s someone there to bring in and sort the mail, check emails, and answer the phone. Caregivers can come for a few hours a week or every day. Call a home care agency today!
If you or an aging loved-one are considering Senior Care in Philadelphia, PA, please contact the friendly staff at Suma Home Care. Call today: (484) 206-4544
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