Over the past two years, more than 2,500 senior citizens in eastern North Carolina benefited from Better Business Bureau’s Senior Series program. BBB launched the program in April 2011 in an effort to educate seniors about ways to recognize and steer clear of common scams.
Nationwide, criminals steal billions of dollars each year from senior citizens. Seniors are often targets of scam artists because they generally are more trusting of others and perceived to be easier to persuade. They also typically have more free time and tend to make decisions by themselves. The most common scams that seniors fall victim to include lottery schemes, financial fraud and charity scams. Seniors often do not realize they have fallen victim to a scam or may avoid telling someone for fear of losing their independence by appearing so vulnerable.
“Knowledge is the best defense against these crimes,” said Toby Barfield, president and CEO of BBB serving Eastern North Carolina. “BBB Senior Series allows seniors to not only learn how to spot and avoid scams, but also offers resources that seniors can turn to if they do become victims.”
BBB Senior Series offers resources to aid seniors in identifying and steering clear of scams, and makes presentations in eastern North Carolina to groups of seniors and caregivers to help raise awareness of these dangers. To request materials or to have someone from BBB speak with your group about marketplace issues, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
For additional information regarding BBB Senior Series, visit bbbseniors.org.