Scammers are constantly calling and emailing older adults in an attempt to steal their personal information. AARP Foundation ElderWatch has recently received an uptick in reports of some more sophisticated tactics in soliciting your financial information.
Fraud Alert Robocalls: you receive a voicemail message asking you to call a specific phone number to hear an important fraud announcement. If you call the number back, an automated recording tells you that your credit card has been deactivated and asks you to key in your credit card number and your card’s three-digit security code directly into the keypad in order to proceed with the call.
Fake Calls from Credit Card Fraud Departments: you receive a call from a representative claiming to be with the fraud department of a major credit card company. The representative provides you with a badge number and a telephone number and already knows your address and credit card number. The representative sounds credible and leads you to believe that your card has been jeopardized, and asks you to verify the three-digit security code on the back of your card. Once the scammer has that security code, coupled with your credit card number, he’ll begin making purchases.
To protect yourself, remember to:
- Never provide personal information to someone who has contacted you unsolicited.
- Shred all documents that include personal information.
- Don’t trust caller ID – verify the identity of the caller by calling the customer service number found directly on the back of your credit card.
- Regularly review your financial statements.