So here in the third in our series about scammers targeting our seniors, I am going to give you some of the lines they have used. Believe me, they will say anything. They have honed their skills in sensing what will motivate (or overwhelm, or frighten) their target, and they will push it all the way to get what they want.
Let’s say you are a senior citizen, born in an time when the phone rang, it was someone you knew or at least someone you could trust. When someone identifies themselves as a police officer, you believe them. When someone says they are in trouble, you believe them. Big. Mistake.
The intro is what keeps you, the potential victim, on the line. They know they have to either trigger your interest or sound official enough that they will be scared to hang up. So they have, among other things, impersonated a radio personality, claimed that they were from the IRS, that they are helping the FBI, that they are collecting on a debt that you owe, that they are from Western Union and they have money for you, that they are a police detective, or even that they are calling from CVS or Walmart!
After they have found the key to your attention, they continue talking to reel you in. And the goal, always, is to get access to your bank account.
Maybe they tell you that your child or grandchild is in trouble and needs you to wire them some money. Or that you have won a large amount of money from a sweepstakes or a foreign lottery (congratulations!) but they need you to send them some money for shipping expenses or to pay the taxes on your prize.
If you are still tracking with them, they set the hook. Wire them the money, but, oh, by the way, let’s not tell your family about your good fortune, let’s just surprise them when you show up with all that cash! In fact, keep it from your friends, too. Won’t it be fun when you surprise them? Think of all the good you can do with the money! You could bring your wife home from the nursing home and hire private duty nurses. You could fund the new wing on your church. You could get out of debt, or….. you get the idea.
In the next article, I will cover some of what might happen once a senior starts sending them money. If you know someone who might be vulnerable to scammers, sign up for my mailing list and I will email you a copy of “8 Ways to Prevent someone you know from Being Scammed”.
Be safe out there!