7 Tips to Preventing Identity Theft Among Seniors

Posted: 8/1/2016 11:02 AM by Interim HealthCare
Identity thieves are constantly looking for their next victims, which has lately been in the elderly age group. According to the FTC, people over the age of 50 have reported the most identity theft problems for the past three years. One reason identity thieves are targeting this age group is the fact that seniors have more money and assets than that of younger adults. They know that they will be able to get a paycheck much quicker with elders instead of just stealing the credit of adults in their 20’s and 30’s.
Older adults are also more trusting, making them an easy target.

If your loved one lives alone, it may be time to hire a trusted advisor in order to help the elder make smart decisions when it comes to their finances and assets. You can also prevent your elderly parent from being the next victim with these preventative measures.

1. Shred any documents with personal information on it. If the elder’s birthdate, social security number, address, or other personal information is on the document, it needs to be shredded. Bills are one example of a document that contains this information. Once it has been paid, your loved one may want to consider shredding the remaining portion of the bill to prevent identity thieves from getting their hands on it.

2. “Free” may have strings attached. Be cautious of any legal or medical services that claim to be free and want your loved one’s personal information. This could be a scam.

3. Only share information with trusted physicians. The only person who should have access to their information is their doctor.

4. Be cautious of phone calls. Watch for phone calls the elder receives, asking for their personal information. Instead, if they trust what the caller has to say, have your loved one ask for the name of the company and a phone number to reach them.

5. Avoid sending information through emails. Some emails may look like they are legitimate, but could be another scamming opportunity. Avoid sending any personal information through emails. The only way you should send this information online is through trusted and secure websites.

6. Check your credit. Encourage the senior to have her credit checked by all three credit reports at least once a year.

7. Have an honest conversation. Sit down with your aging parent and be brutally honest about the dangers of identity theft. They need to know how risky sending this information to strangers really is.
Identity theft has grown in the past 5 years. Prevent your loved one from being a target by following these 7 tips.

If you have an aging loved one in need of senior care contact Interim HealthCare today.