PrimeTime Magazine Spring 2020 - Page 10

CORONAVIRUS SCAMS! targeting seniors on the rise Scammers are exploiting the pandemic, preying particularly on older adults as they self-isolate to protect themselves from the virus. Seniors are receiving calls, texts and emails from scam artists imitating government agencies, financial professionals, financial institutions, utility providers, health authorities, charities and more. In each scam, the scammer tries to persuade the senior out of their money and/or personal information. Self-isolation and fear of the unknown may also be putting seniors at risk of financial exploitation. Feeling isolated, they may be more likely to listen to an overly friendly sales pitch leading to a poor financial decision. As part of World Elder Abuse Awareness Day in June, FCNB reminds New Brunswick seniors that carefulness is key. Watch for the red flags of fraud, which are common across most scams. Ask questions before making financial or purchasing decisions. These are the best defenses against becoming a victim of financial abuse. Here are some COVID-19 scams that have targeted seniors: • Emails, texts and phone calls encouraging seniors to apply for COVID-19 government benefits. • Online romance scams targeting seniors who may be feeling lonely during the pandemic. • Community helping scams where the fraudster claims they are representing a group trying to help socially isolated seniors. • Fraudsters posing as CRA officials claiming your provincial medical benefits have or are running out and you need to send money to reinstate them or to buy private medical insurance. • Scam artists using fear around the current economic conditions to steal an investor’s money. • Calls, emails and texts giving medial advice or requesting urgent action or payment. • Scammers trying to tug at your heartstrings to scam you out of “charitable donations.” • Questionable offers for miracle cures, herbal remedies, vaccinations and faster testing. • Fake online ads selling cleaning products or services to protect from the virus. • Emails or calls from people threatening to disconnect your power for non-payment. Visit FCNB.ca to learn the red flags of fraud and how to protect yourself from financial abuse. Follow FCNB on Facebook for regular updates on current frauds in New Brunswick and subscribe to our email fraud alerts. Washing your hands protects you from COVID-19. Learning the red flags of fraud protects you from COVID-19 scams. Se laver les mains vous protège contre la COVID-19. Détecter les signaux d’alarme d’une fraude vous protège contre les fraudes liées à la COVID-19. Learn the red flags of fraud at FCNB.ca. Renseignez-vous sur les signaux d’alarme de la fraude à FCNB.ca.