Coronavirus isn’t the only item that should be on your radar right now. Scammers are making their comeback as they capitalize on the vulnerability and fear of their victims. During this time, it is crucial to be educated on the scams currently going around and taking the time to discuss them with your loved ones to ensure their identity and finances are safe.
Typically, these calls consist of a scammer calling about one of your family members that are in the hospital due to COVID-19 or an accident and need money to pay for their medical expenses. They will ask you to wire or send your money to help, and the scammer will take advantage of having your account information and money.
Scammers will also take advantage of big natural disasters and ask you to donate to their “charity” using the same approach of asking you to wire or send money.
These scenarios are scary because they have your account information, and they also will encourage other scammers to also target you to maximize their earnings.
Money Mule Scams
It’s a simple request: “I’m a [ ]. Will you please help me send or receive money on my behalf? I am (or a loved one is) battling COVID-19.” Although it may seem like a simple request, it is an illegal scheme scammers use to transfer their illegal funds to someone else. These scammers do not want to raise an alarm of any suspicious activity in their own accounts, so they use their victims to do the dirty work for them. This is known as a money mule scam. The reason why this is dangerous is not only because it is an illegal act that can put you in jail, but you are also giving these scammers access to your personal and financial information.
Medicare Insurance Scams
Every U.S. citizen or permanent resident over 65 years of age is eligible for Medicare. With this knowledge, scammers will act as a Medicare representative and ask you for your personal information. With the information, they will bill Medicare for various services that you have never used.
Counterfeit Prescription Scams
As you look online for better prices for prescriptions, scammers will create counterfeit drugs for purchase. Not only are these drugs fake, but they are also most likely unsafe for you to consume. The scammers are pocketing the money each time you purchase these counterfeit pills.
There are two main fraudulent funeral scams that a senior could come across:
- Scammers will read obituaries and call or attend a funeral service of a stranger to take advantage of the grieving widow or widower. They will claim that the deceased partner had an outstanding debt with them and try to force relatives to settle the fake debts.
- Scammers will take advantage of a family member’s unfamiliarity with the high cost of funeral services. They will try to add unnecessary charges to the bill and attempt to upsell on items that aren’t crucial.
Have You Seen Another Scam? Let us know!
Scammers are consistently getting more creative over time, which is why it is important to stay up to date on current scams. If you have any additional scams that you have come across, please comment below.
If you or your loved one needs guidance on your finances, contact us at 951-686-3608 to find out how we can help.