Home Scams, Burglaries And The ElderlyBy Home Security Source Dec 31 , 2010 | 10:10:00 amPosted in: Burglary & Loss Prevention, Senior Safety
Unfortunately, criminals often prey on the elderly because they are viewed as an easy target. Earlier this month, a news story out of Dallas uncovered a scam meant to swindle money from elderly residents.
An 81-year-old woman answered a knock on her door and was greeted by a man offering to work on her roof because he said he saw a loose vent. She agreed to pay him to inspect it and then shut the door. Thinking twice, she called a neighbor who often kept an eye on her. He came over just in time to snap pictures of the license plates of the vehicle, just before two men jumped in and took off.
As it turns out, the men were part of a traveling scam that target the elderly with offers to check the roof for a small fee, then pressuring them to pay a much higher bill upfront via check. While this woman didn’t get swindled out of any money, she was still a target.
There are ways you can reduce the chances of an elderly loved one being targeted for home scams or burglaries. Be sure a trusted person keeps a watchful eye on the home. Offer to be a contact for them in case they need help right away.
Suggest that they do not answer the door unless they are expecting company and know who the visitor is. There is another scam known as a distraction burglary. In this scam, two or more people gain access to an elderly person’s home claiming to sell a product or requiring their help with a problem. One will distract the elderly resident while another pockets cash and valuables.
Also, consider a companion services security system for your elderly loved one. It’s a hard thing to give up independence and there may be times when no one can be around to offer help when it’s needed. Companion services can offer protection by instantly alerting trained monitoring personnel in any emergency situation.
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