Telephone con artists target seniors
As we get older we tend to become more vulnerable to fraud. Con artist know this, which is why they often target seniors.
"A lot of these folks are isolated and lonely and this is the only person calling." said Doug Shadel with AARP Washington. "A friendly voice asks how they're doing and they're susceptible."
Shadel, an expert on fraud, says these phone bandits will call and call and call - sometimes 60 or 70 times a day - until someone picks up. And if you do answer, they'll say anything to get what they want.
"We've heard from con men that they'll spend hours on the phone. They'll pray with the people to get to know them and get them to trust them," Shadel told me.
A lot of seniors don't want to be rude and hang up - even though the should. AARP suggests having a prepared script written down buy the phone ready to read if you get one of these unwanted calls.
"We teach people to have a practiced phrase that they can use when an unwanted call comes in and they can just read it," Shadell explained. For instance, 'I'm sorry, this is not a good time. Thank you for calling.'"