Hip to the Know

With so many changes in technology and social media, protecting your senior from scams in Orange County may not be as easy as it once was.  Many seniors are getting on the internet, chatting online and using social media to connect with loved ones.  There are literally hundreds or thousands of advertisements and pop-ups that one may encounter while online.  Seniors, who are relatively new to the internet and social media, may fall victim to scams and not legitimate offers.  It is important to remind your senior aged loved one:

  1. If you didn’t request it, it may be a scam (don’t call me, I’ll call you)
  2. Don’t sign up for unsolicited offers
  3. Never provide account numbers, personal information, social security number etc. online
  4. Only buy things online from reputable sites with secured payment pages
  5. When in doubt, ask a loved one for advice

Seniors who are scrolling through their newsfeeds may find that there are many offers available for new services and products.  Many times, these advertisements are based on places a senior has visited on the internet before and geared toward their interests.  Many of these offers may be just too good to be true or come with a catch.  Seniors should remember that while these offers may seem like a good deal, that if the senior didn’t request it, it may be a scam just to fish for personal information.  A senior may get an idea for a product or service in which he or she wishes to buy or sign up for, but then the senior should research a reputable company in their area, not necessarily taking the offer from the advertisement in the unsolicited offer.  Many pop-ups and advertisements which a senior may encounter on the internet may ask for personal information, credit and bank account information and social security numbers.  A senior should be wary of any unsolicited offer or advertisement pop-up which is requesting this information.  Most likely if it is not something that the senior has sought out it is a scam and not something which would positively impact the senior.  With new online shoppers, it is important to show them what a trusted website is and what to look for at the checkout online before entering payment information.  Seniors may need a quick lesson in what to look for when first using the internet for online shopping.  Having a strong support system, seniors may prevent scams and potential financial abuse.  A senior should feel comfortable coming to you, the loved one, to ask questions about the internet, social media and shopping online.  The internet can be a great way for a senior to stay hip to the know and up on changes in technology, but it may also allow for a senior to get scammed.  Ask your senior aged loved one, who is new to the internet and social media, to come to you when in doubt or with any questions before making a decision online.  It is important to have a discussion with your senior aged loved one about the potential for scams.

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