Cambridge Quiz: Test your knowledge of senior scams
Why do con artists so often target senior citizens? The usual answers are true to some extent: older people tend to be more trusting; some are lonely or fearful; and many fail to report scams they have experienced. But perhaps the primary reason criminals target seniors is because “that’s where the money is.” In fact, while seniors represent only 12 percent of the U.S. population, they own more than half of all the financial assets in the country.
So whatever your age, brush up on some of the most common scams by taking our little quiz:
1. You feel younger than you look, so when you see a celebrity-endorsed ad for low-cost anti-aging treatment, you…
A. Call the 800 number right away to get the special low rate
B. Ask about ingredients and side effects
C. Call the Better Business Bureau
D. Shop around for the best price.
2. Soon after a terrible storm has left thousands homeless, you receive a call soliciting a tax-deductible, charitable donation to help those in need. Your move?
A. Tell the caller you don’t give out credit card information to unsolicited calls.
B. If it’s an organization you trust, look up the number for yourself and call them directly to make a donation
C. Ask what percentage of your donation will go to actual release efforts.
D. All of the above
3. You receive an email from your bank, telling you that they suspect someone has been using your account illegally. The email instructs you to immediately verify your bank account and social security number, using the link provided. You should:
A. Delete the message and call your bank to tell them about the email.
B. Click on the link to check it out.
C. Provide the information requested.
D. Close your account.
4. You receive a call from someone offering free help accessing the new healthcare law. Which of the following are legitimate reasons for the call?
A. You need to provide information to get a new Medicare Card
B. You may be eligible for a refund.
C. Your Caller-ID says the call is from the local hospital
D. None of the above.
5. A funeral director tells you that you are legally obliged to buy an expensive casket for a direct cremation. What do you do?
A. The law is the law: buy the casket.
B. Tell the funeral director he’s wrong; a simple cardboard casket is all that is required.
C. Review all the charges carefully, ask questions – don’t allow anyone to pressure you.
D. B and C
- (C) Fraudulent anti-aging treatments are often useless and sometimes dangerous (remember, the root ingredient in Botox is botulism). Always check them out with the Better Business Bureau and/or your doctor.
- (D) And don’t believe anyone who says 100 percent of your donation goes to direct help; there is always a cost to fundraising and administration.
- (A) Never click on links or open attachments that you don’t have complete faith in; they may expose you to computer viruses or worse.
- (D) You do not need a new card; if you are entitled to a refund, you won’t have to provide any information, it will simply be sent to you; and caller-IDs can be manipulated.
- (D) A simple, cardboard casket is all that is required for direct cremation. And if a funeral director tells you otherwise, don’t trust anything he or she says.