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AARP, October 20, 2010
En español | Scams abound these days, and even savvy consumers can fall victim if they’re not careful. Older adults, in particular, are frequent targets of fraudulent and deceptive business practices because of the perception that they’re more likely to trust and act politely toward strangers.
Don’t let a scam artist take advantage of you or your loved one. Take these precautions to protect yourselves.
Learn to Spot Common Scams
Con artists use a variety of methods to dupe unsuspecting consumers. We often hear about Internet-based scams, but swindlers also lure people in with phone calls, direct mailings, broadcast and print advertisements, and door-to-door solicitations.
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A healthy dose of skepticism can protect you and your loved one in any circumstance, particularly when you come across offers such as these:
Never let anyone pressure you or your loved one into making an immediate decision. If you’re not interested, say, "No thank you." Otherwise, say that you need to think about it. If a telephone solicitor continues to apply pressure, simply hang up the phone. Install and use caller ID to screen out unfamiliar callers. And do the same for your loved one.
Other advice for you and your loved one:
Cut Down on Solicitations
To limit the number of solicitations you and your loved one receive by phone, snail mail and e-mail, take these steps:
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