AUBURN, Mass. – The Auburn Senior Center and the town of Auburn are warning seniors about the top 10 scams going around and where residents should report them.
These scams include Medicare/health care fraud, counterfeit prescription drugs, funeral and cemetery scams, fraudulent anti-aging products, telemarketing, Internet fraud, investment schemes, homeowners/reverse mortgage scams, sweepstakes/lottery scams and grandparent scams.
The town of Auburn wants seniors to know how to identify these scams:
- Medicare/health care fraud: People posing as Medicare representatives get older people to give out personal information.
- Counterfeit prescription drugs: Seniors looking for lower-price medication may purchase unsafe substances.
- Funeral and cemetery scams: Scammers attend a funeral and claim the deceased had an outstanding debt, or funeral directors insist an expensive casket is necessary for cremation when a less costly one will do.
- Fraudulent anti-aging products: Whether it’s fake Botox or bogus remedies, anti-aging products are big business.
- Telemarketing: Scammers use fake telemarketing calls to prey on older people.
- Internet Fraud: Automated Internet scams simulate virus-scanning software to get seniors to download a fake anti-virus program.
- Investment schemes: Investors look for a partner to claim inheritance money or invest in financial products.
- Homeowners/reverse mortgage scams: Seniors are given unsecured reverse mortgages.
- Sweepstakes/lottery scams: Elders are told they won a sweepstakes but need to send a check to unlock the prize.
- Grandparent scam: Someone calls asking, “Do you know who this is?” The senior names a relative and the caller assumes the name and asks for money to pay for overdue rent, car repair, etc.
For assistance identifying frauds and scams, and guidance to an appropriate agency, contact the Attorney General’s Public Inquiry Hotline at 617-727-8400.
Elder-specific help is available through the toll-free Elder’s Hotline at 888-243-5337.
For scams occurring through the mail, contact the U.S. Postal Service Inspection Service at 877-876-2455.
For Internet and white-collar scams, contact the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center at www.ic3.gov.
For telephone scams, contact the FTC at 877-382-4357.
For Attorney General Martha Coakley’s guide to identity theft for victims and consumers, log on here.