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Fraudsters can target anyone, even those of us who know a lot about fraud. They often prey on kindness, trustfulness, and the financial assets of older adults. Staying informed and educating your loved ones can help keep you and your family safe from financial abuse. 

Common Scams 

Like most scams, fraudsters prey on our emotions and use fear and urgency to con us into giving them sensitive information or money by using sophisticated and creative tactics. Being aware of common scams that target older adults, can help protect you and your loved ones.

  • Romance Scam: Fraudsters exploit the desire for companionship and pose as interested online romantic partners through social media, dating, or gaming websites. Once a relationship is established, they start asking for money or gift cards to help them or their loved ones. 
  • Charity/ Lottery/ Sweepstakes Scam: Fraudsters pose as an employee of a legitimate company and request money for charity, or falsely claim the victim has won a lottery or sweepstakes and then request a “fee” before the winnings can be collected.
  • Grandparent Scam: Fraudsters pose as a victim’s loved one in distress, usually a child or grandchild, and give the idea that they’re in need of immediate financial help, such as bail money, payment for medical assistance, etc.
  • Tech Support Scam: Fraudsters pose as technical support representatives to help repair a non-existent computer problem. The victim is asked to pay a fee for the “service” or asked for remote access to their computer, opening them up to sensitive information being stolen.
  • Imposter Scam: Fraudsters pose as a representative of a legitimate organization like Amazon, Apple or the Credit Union and trick their victims into providing their login credentials to steal sensitive information. Please know, all legitimate financial or government institutions will never email, text, or call you asking for your account or any personal information.
  • Government Impersonation Scam: Fraudsters pose as government officials and threaten legal action such as arrest or prosecution unless they are paid.
  • Home Repair Scam: Fraudsters visit the victim, promise home repairs for an upfront payment, and then never provide services.
  • Family/Caregiver Scam: Relatives or acquaintances of the victim take advantage or steal their money.

How to protect yourself and your loved ones 

If something doesn’t feel or sound right, or if it seems too good to be true, it may not be real. Take a moment and pause. Resist the pressure to act quickly and reach out to the Credit Union at 800.462.8328, or someone you trust for advice. 

Remember, never share personal information over phone, email or text, and do not send money, gift cards, or checks to people you don’t know or only know online. 

What to do if you think you or a loved one has fallen victim to fraud

Your Credit Union is always here to guide and protect you, without judgement. We know scams are common and they work because they catch people off guard, regardless of age. We’re here to help. If you feel you or your loved one have been the target of a scam, report it immediately. If you feel fraud has occurred, please contact:

For more information on current scams and how to report them, FTC website. Or, visit Extra Credit on our website for more ways to stay safe.