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AARP’s weekly podcast The Perfect ScamSM tells the stories of people who find themselves the target of a scam. Host Bob Sullivan introduces listeners to those who have experienced scams firsthand, as well as leading experts who pull back the curtain on how scammers operate. 

The Perfect ScamSM is a project of the AARP Fraud Watch Network, which equips consumers like you with the knowledge to give you power over scams.

Bonus Episode: ‘Catphishing the Catphisher’

In this bonus episode, Bob welcomes special guest David Etue, CEO of Nisos, to discuss their recent study, “Catphishing the Catphisher.” The results were not what they expected!

Colorado Funeral Home Body Brokering Scheme, Part 2

In part 2, journalist Brian Grow uncovers shocking truths about what is really going on at Sunset Mesa Funeral Home. The revelations leave families and their Colorado community reeling.

Colorado Funeral Home Body Brokering Scheme, Part 1

After Diana’s stepfather’s cremains go missing from Sunset Mesa Funeral Home under mysterious circumstances, an investigation exposes the dark, unregulated side of the body trade industry.

Real Estate Company Accused of Preying on Philadelphia Homeowners, Part 2

Homeowners fight to be released from their 40-year contracts and lawmakers rush to help

Real Estate Company Accused of Preying on Philadelphia Homeowners, Part 1

Philadelphia homeowners are offered cash payments for a promise to list their homes with MV Realty if they decide to sell. But they are shocked to later find out that the contracts are for 40 years!

Puppy Scammers Steal Thousands

Tana hopes to find her husband, who suffers from dementia, a new canine companion for Christmas. She pays a breeder online, but the puppy doesn’t arrive, and the scammers demand more and more money.

International Crime Ring Sets Up in West Virginia College Town

Federal prosecutor Katie Robeson hasn’t been on the job long when she learns that the college town of Huntington, West Virginia is the center of a massive international internet crime ring.

Words Matter: Blame Fraud on Criminals, Not Victims

In this special episode, Bob hosts a roundtable discussion on changing the conversation around victim blaming

FBI and Grandmother Bring Down Crime Ring, Part 2

In Part 2, the FBI investigation into a rash of grandparent scams gets a big break: There’s a video and an eyewitness. One San Diego grandmother could be the key to bringing down the entire criminal network.

FBI and Grandmother Bring Down Crime Ring, Part 1

When Susan receives an urgent call from her “grandson,” she rushes to get him $9,000, only to quickly discover it is a scam. Similar cases all over San Diego are catching the attention of the FBI.

A Texas Hospice Provider’s Deadly Scheme, Part 2

In Part 2, Special Agent Cook learns the shocking extent of hospice provider Novus Healthcare’s crimes: more than $27 million defrauded from Medicare and harm to countless patients along the way.

A Texas Hospice Provider’s Deadly Scheme, Part 1

Soon after her mother enters Novus hospice care, Judy realizes something isn’t right. Meanwhile, FBI Special Agent Cook is discovering that the truth about Novus is worse than they could’ve imagined.

The Perfect Scam Podcast Celebrates 5 Years

This April marks five years of “The Perfect Scam” podcast! Since launching in 2018, we’ve brought you stories of fraud told by the people who lived them, stories of trauma but also of bravery and triumph. With the FTC reporting a staggering $8.8 billion in losses to scammers in 2022, we remain committed to continue bringing you the very latest information and resources to give you power over scams.

Previous Episodes

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About the Fraud Watch Network

Whether you have been personally affected by scams or fraud or are interested in learning more, the AARP Fraud Watch Network advocates on your behalf and equips you with the knowledge you need to feel more informed and confidently spot and avoid scams.




Membership Perks

Help Support The Perfect ScamSM

AARP members help make possible free podcasts like The Perfect ScamSM and the resources of the AARP Fraud Watch Network. Not a member? Join with an automatic renewal and save 25% on your first year of membership PLUS you’ll receive a FREE RFID-blocking wallet.

Fraud Expert

Graphic illustration of Bob Sullivan

Bob Sullivan is an independent journalist and the author of five books, including New York Times Best Sellers, Gotcha Capitalism and Stop Getting Ripped Off! He spent nearly two decades working at and NBC News, where he created and wrote the popular Red Tape Chronicles blog, covering cybercrime, privacy, and other consumer issues. He has won a Peabody Award, a Society of Professional Journalists Public Service Award, and a Consumer Federation of America Consumer Media Service Award. He was the host of Breach, a podcast about history's biggest hacks, and So, Bob? a podcast about the unintended consequences of technology. He now writes The Red Tape Chronicles column at and can be reached at