Recent news reports from sources across the United States are highlighting a new scam becoming increasingly prevalent amongst senior citizens. This time, the ring of criminals, based in Jamaica, is convincing seniors to wire tens of thousands of dollars in hopes of receiving a lottery prize worth millions of dollars. With an approximate 29,000 complaints being filed last year in relation to lottery scams and only $1.2 million dollars of over $300 million sent ever being recovered, Senator Susan Collins (R-Maine) is calling for tough action, and hoping that indicting someone in Jamaica followed by extradition to the United States will send a tough message to the scammers.
However, in the meantime seniors are suffering. A recent article in the Orlando Sentinel noted outrage over seniors being put in precarious positions. For instance, an Orange County senior was placed on the FBI Watch List for money laundering after wiring $300,000 over an 18 month period and waiting for a prize in return that was never there.
Can Home Care Software Help Keep Seniors Safe?
Scams like the lottery-based crime rings coming out of Jamaica rear their ugly heads in all shapes and forms – from a service provider claiming to complete work that’s not needed, to mail scams requesting checks in return for a prize. Keeping seniors safe from financial abuse and fraud can be a difficult task.
One potential safeguard is the use of a home care software or home care system, such as ClearCare, along with the watchful eye of a trustworthy caregiver. Simply having someone in the home is often a deterrent for scam artists who may be afraid of getting “found out” or reported by caregiver figures. Additionally, using a reliable home care software or home care system to track odd activities can help care providers and family members keep track of suspicious mail, calls and people around a senior’s home.
For example, if a caregiver has fielded calls from a suspicious source during her shift, a message left via telephony in a home care system, such as ClearCare, can alert administrators and family members to a potential problem. These comments logged in the home care software or home care system, and visible to family members via a secure portal, can also help track patterns of any odd circumstances or behavior and allow loved ones to perhaps recognize a scam in progress.
Additionally, caregivers in the home can help seniors decipher pieces of mail, phone calls and offers of service that seem suspicious – as well as research the origin to ensure that seniors have an extra hand in finding information that protects them, and their pocket books.
It’s a sad fact that seniors are a common target for financial criminals, but with the help of an honest caregiver, and the monitoring help provided with a home care software or home care system, such as ClearCare, seniors can rest a little easier when it comes to keeping their nest egg safe.