You’ve just discovered your parent has been the victim of a fraud or scam. What do you do first?
Ask everyone you can everything you can, starting with the 2 most important questions:
1. “Has anyone threatened to hurt you, or someone close to you, if you don’t do what they want?”
If your parent or elder loved one answers yes, notify law enforcement about this IMMEDIATELY. Don’t take chances with this, no matter how unlikely the threat seems.
2. “Did you give the people you spoke with any account numbers, passwords, your Social Security number, or any other unique or security related information?”
If they say yes to this one, it’s an even worse emergency than just getting ripped off. Because of the probability of identity theft as an added layer of threat, it’s crucial you begin taking action now to minimize the damage. For starters, see chapter 12 in my book, Scammed: 3 Steps to Help Your Elder Parents and Yourself. Next, see the website for the Identity Theft Resource Center at www.idtheftcenter.org. You can also give them a call at 888-400-5530.
Thanks for reading,