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AARP AARP States New Mexico

AARP New Mexico, Attorney General Raúl Torrez turn the tables on scammers to keep New Mexico seniors safe

Attorney General Raúl Torrez joined AARP New Mexico volunteers, Tuesday, June 13, in reaching out to New Mexicans across the state in an effort to share information on how to keep themselves safe from fraud and scams. The event, called a “Reverse Boiler Room”, took the common criminal tactic of cold-calling people, and reversed it to offer proactive tips to spot and avoid scams.

Attorney Raúl Torrez joins AARP New Mexico State Director Joseph Sanchez to discuss fraud prevention.

“We know that each and everyday people of all ages in our state are harassed by these crooks and while there are certain things you can do to lessen the number of calls, you can never make them stop,” said Joseph Sanchez, AARP New Mexico State Director. “Our goal is to arm as many people as we can with the information they need to spot potential scams and the tools they need to avoid them.”

“Today’s event is a proactive action that is aimed to provide senior citizens with the tools they need to help keep themselves safe from predators who are trying to access their information and assets,” said AG Torrez. “I have always promised New Mexicans that I would fight to protect our most vulnerable populations and today’s joint effort is a prime example of the kinds of actions that my Office will participate in to accomplish that mission.”


Callers reached about 1400 New Mexicans during the event.

In 2002, New Mexicans lost $38.2 million to fraud, losing on average $700 per incident. The top scam people fell victim to is what is known as imposter scams. One in five fraud reports to the Federal Trade Commission from New Mexico involved a criminal impersonating a trusted source such as the Social Security Administration, the IRS, law enforcement, a utility company or a retailer.

The next highest form of fraud was identity theft. New Mexico ranks 33rd in identity theft incidents in the country with credit card fraud being the leading type of identity theft that occurred.

To help combat imposter fraud, particularly romance scams, the Reverse Boiler Room highlighted things to look out for. Tips include:

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    Volunteers from the Attorney General's Office and AARP New Mexico share tips on how to prevent fraud.
    Be suspicious of anyone who contacts you unsolicited and suddenly wants to chat – especially if they suggest a new place for you to talk online.
  • Never share personal information over the telephone or by email if you have not initiated the contact.
  • Anytime someone you haven’t met in person asks you to send them money, often in a form of a prepaid gift cards or cryptocurrency, is a scam.
  • Romance scammers will profess a deep love for you very quickly. This is a major red flag.
  • Romance scammers often say they are frequently out of the country for work or are in the military. They want to come see you but don’t have the money for a plane ticket due to some unforeseen crisis and ask you for money.
    New Mexico Attorney General Raúl Torrez calls New Mexico seniors to share tips on how to prevent fraud.
    For more information or to get help if you have become a victim of fraud, contact the AARP Fraud Watch Network Helpline at 1-877-908-3360 or contact the New Mexico Attorney General’s Office at 1-844-255-9210.
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