Elder Care Belle Meade TN - Tips for Preventing Elderly Identity Theft

Tips for Preventing Elderly Identity Theft

Now more than ever, seniors are at risk of identity theft. It’s up to loved ones and elder care providers to take the lead in protecting seniors in their care. Every year, seniors lose $3 billion in identity theft scams, and as things continue to move toward digital, the thought is that number will only rise.

There are things family caregivers and elder care aides can do to decrease the risk of identity theft. Continue reading to learn more.

Why Are Seniors Susceptible to Identity Theft?

There are several reasons why seniors are more susceptible to identity theft. The first is that many seniors have built a nest egg from savings and retirement over time. They are seen as the perfect target since they might not initially recognize a change in their accounts. Seniors also spend more time at doctor’s offices, which are often at high risk for identity theft, given the large amounts of personal data.

Many seniors live alone or may be isolated from their families and friends for various reasons. Knowing this, identity thieves can convince them that family members are in trouble or connect with them socially and gain their trust.

A third reason is an unfortunate fact that seniors often suffer a decline in memory during their later years. Identity thieves take advantage of this, hoping the fund change goes unnoticed. They bank on the idea that seniors might assume they used the funds and don’t remember.

For all these reasons, monitoring accounts for suspicious activity is essential. Having elder care providers in the home also helps eliminate isolation, decreasing seniors’ chance of being scammed.

Tips for Preventing Identity Theft

Several things can be done to prevent identity theft. Consider the ideas below to see what may or may not work for your loved ones.

Junk mail is perfect for identity thieves. These pre-printed offers provide valuable information for those looking to open accounts in others’ names. It is easy to opt out of these mail offers by registering online. Decreasing the amount of mail coming to the home decreases the risk of identity theft.

Decrease the number of telemarketers calling the home. Phone calls from identity thieves posing as telemarketers are another way they gain control of seniors’ information. Opting out of these calls can eliminate the risk. In addition, talking with seniors about handling calls that appear to be from a financial institution or credit card company is vital. Asking for a callback number to confirm the call is legitimate can help eliminate the risk of personal information falling into the wrong hands.

Don’t Carry Important Documents

Elder Care Belle Meade TN - Tips for Preventing Elderly Identity Theft

Elder Care Belle Meade TN – Tips for Preventing Elderly Identity Theft

Make copies of essential documents and mark a line through sensitive information. For instance, make a copy of the social security card, but use a Sharpie to mark through the last four of the social security number. Do this for medical cards as well if they have sensitive information. Original cards should be stored in a secure place.
Elder care providers can help with remembering important information to decrease safety risks. Talk with loved ones and the care team to ensure everyone is on the same page about protective measures.

There are many issues that seniors must deal with as they age. Having their identity compromised is one issue that can be eliminated with the help of a supportive team and good planning. Work with the elder care team on ways to ensure loved ones don’t fall victim to this crime.

Source:  https://www.comparitech.com/identity-theft-protection/senior-scam-statistics/

If you or an aging loved one are considering Elder Care Services in Belle Meade TN, please contact the caring staff at Touching Hearts at Home. Serving Middle Tennessee (Nashville, Brentwood, Belle Meade, Franklin, Spring Hill, Columbia, Pulaski, and more!) Call today: 629-203-7925.

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