Senior citizens scammed out of 298 million annually in SC

Local News

John Island, S.C. – WCBD – Senior citizens are targeted for money scams and fraud over any other age group according to Jeannie Wilson, Resource Specialist with Palmetto Project.

1 in 10 U.S. citizens have fallen victim to elder fraud in the last year.

“They didn’t grow up in the information age that we have and they don’t necessarily see the red flags when someone gives them a call or tries to make them a victim of a scam,” said Wilson.

Common scams that target seniors include identity theft, tech support, sweeps stakes, and lottery scams, and fake charity.

“A lot of people will call and say they are with XYZ charity and they don’t know they are not a legitimate charity,” said Wilson.

Another very common scam targetting seniors is the grandparent scam.

“Someone will call and pretend to be their grandchild and they need money now they’re in trouble so one way to prevent that and prevent yourself from being taken advantage of is to hang up and call your grandchild. Call their parent. A lot of them will tell you please don’t call my mom I’m going to get in trouble, call the mother,” said Wilson.

If you feel you have been a victim of a scam it is recommended you report it. You can file a police report, lose a bank account if your information has been compromised and can file a complaint with the federal trade commission.

The Charleston County Public Library and Palmetto Project will hold information sessions for senior citizens at the John’s Island, Dorchester, and Otranto locations.

The John’s Island Regional Library will meet every Tuesday at 10:30 A.M. through July.

Dorchester Road Regional Library will meet every Monday at 2 P.M. through July.

Otranto Road Regional Library will have a session on Tuesday, March 31st and Tuesday, April 28th.

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