Your dad spent years of his life serving our country in the military. He kept Americans safe, and now it’s your turn to help keep him safe. Unfortunately, every year countless veterans are the target of scams that seek to steal their identity or financial resources. The scams range from tricking veterans into purchasing things to stealing veteran’s benefits.
Why are Veterans a Target?
Veterans are a favorite target of scammers because of certain factors that many of them have in common. Some of those factors are:
- Guaranteed Income: Scammers know veterans receive a government pension or other steady income. Sometimes they time their scheme to contact veterans around the time they will be receiving their monthly pay, hoping that the person will be more likely to spend money right around their payday.
- Physical or Mental Conditions: Veterans who have disabilities are at a greater risk for scams because criminals may try to use their disabilities to manipulate them into providing certain kinds of information.
- Military Mindset: Scammers may use a veteran’s patriotism or desire to help others to trick them.
Common Scams that Target Veterans
Sadly, there are lots of common scams used against veterans. Even worse, they must work on some people or scammers wouldn’t continue to use them. Being aware of them can aid you in assisting your parent to avoid them. Some common scams are:
Fees for Records: If someone claims your parent has to pay a fee to gain access to their military records, they are being targeted. Military records and forms are available at no charge through your local Veterans Administration (VA).
- Phishing: Scammers call veterans and claim to be from the VA. They request personal information saying it is needed to update records. Don’t provide information to unsolicited callers. Instead, hang up and call the VA directly.
- Benefits Buyout: Criminals contact veterans and offer them a lump sum payout in exchange for their future benefits payouts. The amount they offer is usually substantially less than the actual value of the benefits.
- Discounts: Sometimes veterans are offered discounts on items, like cars and loans, but the items aren’t really discounted at all. And, sometimes the items don’t even exist.
If your veteran parent lives alone, they may be at greater risk for scams because of difficulty determining when they are being targeted. Having a senior care provider who assist your parent with responding to calls and emails can help. Senior care providers can guide your parent in making good choices and avoiding providing sensitive information to strangers. A senior care provider can also assist your parent with their finances, and alert you if anything seems amiss.
When you are in need of care for a senior loved one, consider senior care provided by Golden Heart Senior Care. We have offices nationwide. For more information, call us today at (800) 601-2792.