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Elder Theft & Scams Resource Guide

With more than 50 million Americans age 60 and older, seniors are prime targets for financial exploitation, both by people they know and trust and by strangers. Financial exploitation is believed to cost older adults over $3 billion annually. The following resources provide information about the various common types of fraud and financial scams and how you can protect yourself or a loved one.


Articles from the National Council on Aging: Avoiding Scams and Fraud for Older Adults

The following articles provide a wealth of unbiased information that you can trust to help protect your financial security:

22 Senior Scams You Must Know and Avoid: Far too many older adults fall prey to scammers who are looking to make a quick buck. Here are 22 tips that can help you steer clear of scams and swindles and to stay safe.

Top 5 Financial Scams Targeting Seniors: Learn how to identify and stop the most prominent scams so you can protect yourself and your loved ones from financial fraud.

Sweetheart Scams - How to Avoid Being a Victim: A sweetheart scam is when a person uses a fake online profile to engage victims, stir up romantic feelings, and ask for money.

Protecting Yourself Against Tech Support Scams: Computer technical support scams involve unsolicited offers to fix a “problem” with your computer or software.

How to Prevent Phishing Scams: Phishing is a type of internet hoax in which scammers use email and other methods to steal personal information, such as financial details or account passwords.

How to Create Strong Passwords - A Simple Guide: Learn steps you can take to create and manage theft-proof passwords for the sites and applications you use every day.

Government Imposter Scams: What They Are and How to Spot Them: Learn how to identify and avoid current government imposter scams—and what to do if you’ve been scammed by phone, email, or text.

5 Warning Signs of a Medicare Scam—and How to Protect Yourself: With Medicare scams, criminals try to steal your identity to obtain health care services, supplies, and prescription medications.


Protecting Yourself if Your Identity Is Stolen

You can minimize damage and make sure you’re not held responsible for debts illegally taken on in your name by taking immediate action. Outlines what you need to do if you are a victim of a scammer. Important information from the Massachusetts Office of the Attorney General.

Additional Reliable Resources to Help Avoid Scams

Scammers Use Fake Emergencies To Steal Your Money: Someone calls or contacts you saying they’re a family member or close friend. They say they need money to get out of trouble. Not so fast. Is there really an emergency? Is that really your family or friend calling? It could be a scammer. Information from the Federal Trade Commission.

Home Improvement Scams: This online brochure provides you with information, tips and resources to help you avoid being the target of a home improvement scam. Information from the Administration on Aging.

Financial Abuse Roadmap: An interesting resource from the federal Department of Justice. Answer a few simple questions and be directed to resources to help you.

Scams and Safety - Elder Fraud: With the elderly population growing and seniors racking up more than $3 billion in losses annually, elder fraud is likely to be a growing problem. Information from the FBI.

Common Scams That Target the Elderly: There are plenty of ways to stay ahead of the fraudsters and avoid getting scammed. This guide from, walks you through the most common scams that target older adults, so you know exactly what to look out for.

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