How to Not Get Scammed

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How to not get scammed should be easy for senior citizens. We’re experienced, wise old folks who learned, when we were children, the golden rule of scam avoidance—if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Yet the FBI reports that people over 60 lost $1.7 billion to fraud in 2021. Today’s challenge is simply the pervasiveness of online scamming. When we were growing up, fraudsters needed to show up on our doorstep to sell us over-priced, poor-quality aluminum siding. Today, a scammer, with little effort, can send out millions of emails for virtually nothing. Robocalls are equally easy to generate cheaply and efficiently.

The good news, as the old codgers discuss in this episode, how to not get scammed isn’t difficult. Starting with a healthy dose of skepticism followed by a good measure of common sense, most folks in their senior years can avoid the clutches of the online fraudster. We explore how often we see email scams (daily, of course), and how we identify fraudulent messages in our inboxes. And, because it is all too common, we relate stories of friends and family who have been the victims of fraud.

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4 comments on “How to Not Get Scammed

  1. Richard Tate says:

    The most amusing scam attempt I ever had was when I received a phone call from MY OWN PHONE NUMBER. Obviously someone had “cloned” my number and was using it to make phony calls. Like you codgers I never answer calls I don’t know.

  2. Jack Turner says:

    NEVER respond to a phone solicitor!! Example: Pleasant caller requesting contributions for police and fire people and their families. It all SOUNDS legit, but….
    Also, ALL threatening call are scams (No, you didn’t miss jury duty, and they are not going to arrest you!).

  3. Joanne Mulinare says:

    Regarding not answering calls from numbers you don’t know – Iphone has a setting under Phone that sends callers who are not in your contact list straight to voicemail. I have lost count of how many calls a day go straight to voicemail, but they get my usual message that says Leave a Message, so real people do that.

    1. Gary Ebersole says:

      Excellent suggestion, Joanne. I follow a similar practice by not answering calls without a name from my contact list. I do like to look at the number just in case, but if it’s unknown, I hit the right-side button on my iPhone to send it off the voicemail.

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