U.S. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz recently sponsored a fraud prevention seminar for South Florida seniors. According to Wasserman Schultz seniors are prime targets for scams, identity theft, and other schemes. She shared some tips with them and told the attendees what kind of situations call for extra caution. Seniors should be on guard against the following schemes: e-mails offering free things or prizes without the retirees entering a contest, free Medicare services that are not sponsored by the federal government and  people asking for Medicare numbers (seniors’ Social Security numbers). They should also never carry their Social Security on them because purse snatchers would be able to steal their identities. Wasserman Schultz went on to tell the seniors not to be ashamed if they are victims of fraud. They should always report any scams as soon as they happen.

Seniors are prime bait for fraudsters feeding frenzy says fraud expert Linda Webb, aka The Fraud Dog. The problem is that the fraudster breeds new scams every day. When one fraud scheme doesn’t work they simply try another. Seniors looking for bargains, coupons, medical help, vacations, investments, home repairs, lower drug costs, contests, magazines, and even septic tank clean outs are just some of the creative scams they use. The fraudster will do anything to steal from seniors, or really anyone, even our youth. The fraudster doesn’t want to be identified, so take the fraudsters picture. Take your time, as the fraudster is usually in a hurry, and be careful of the new person who rolls into your community promising to make your life better. Old carpet baggers are alive today using the same tricks they used 100-years ago, but with new creative spins. Never give out your social security number, personal identification, bank information, or Medicaid/Medicare numbers. Seniors, it is time to send the fraudster packing, says Linda Webb, The Fraud Dog. With your help we can stop the fraudster in their tracks. Always report fraud to local authorities so that the fraudster can be tracked no matter where they land next.

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