June 15, World Elder Abuse Awareness Day, is a day to spread knowledge about the span of elder abuse and to promote resources to address the issue. BBB of Central New England takes many calls annually regarding seniors being scammed or taken advantage of by deceptive business practices, many times financially. Financial elder abuse is a common type of elder abuse and it occurs when a seniors banking or financial information is exploited by a scammer. Many victims do not realize they are being taken advantage or, if they do, they are often too embarrassed to admit it. Sometimes the abuse is carried out by someone the victim knows. It can be difficult to identify, so it is important for family members and caretakers to pay close attention to their elderly loved ones and check into any suspicious behavior. BBB recommends to look for these signs:
· Belongings or missing property
· Unusual banking or credit card activity
· Complaints they can no longer afford normal purchases
· Suspicious stories about new personal affairs or relationships with an unknown person
· Sudden changes to a will or Power of Attorney
· Unnecessary big-ticket purchases
· Sudden interest in investments or a business opportunity
· Claims they have won a prize, vacation or lottery
· Numerous unpaid bills or bounced checks.
If you or someone you know might be a victim of financial elderly abuse contact the local police or law enforcement agency and report it too BBB’s Report a Scam. To stay up to date on scam alerts and tips check out BBBs Scam Source.