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Have You Been Scammed?

I normally like to talk about downsizing in my articles each month but recently I had a senior citizen friend who was scammed. It was a very scary situation for my friend. She recently opened a credit card and her information fell into the wrong hands. Unfortunately, the scammers scared her into wiring money to protect herself and her identity. Once she sent the money through the bank it was gone and so were the scammers. I immediately called the bank and asked what can be done to help her get her money back and the bank said they can try to help but there isn’t a guarantee because the money immediately comes out of the account. I also learned that this is one of the many scams people are using to try to take advantage of senior citizens today.

So, if you have been scammed or have a friend who has been scammed here are the do’s and don’ts:

DO: Report the fraud Let people who can help you know about the scam. Reporting the deception can stop more individuals from being victimized. Start by contacting your bank and the Federal Trade Commission at You may also want to report losses to local police or your State Consumer Protection Office at state-consumer. 

DON’T: Be embarrassed Fraudsters are convincing, and millions of people fall victim to their tactics every year. Although it is unsettling to be taken in by a scam, don’t let those uncomfortable feelings stop you from taking action. 

DO: Work with your bank to recover lost funds Contact your financial service provider to let them know what happened. Although there is no guarantee, they are often able to help recover your funds if you get in touch quickly. 

DON’T: Stay silent Talking to family and friends that you trust about your experience can help you move on. Remember–they encounter scams too. Sharing your story can raise awareness and keep your loved ones safe.

DO: Change passwords and ignore unknown calls After a scam, change your passwords, replace any compromised credit cards, and block calls from unknown numbers to avoid getting scammed again.

DON’T: Stop using all devices Getting scammed can shake you up, but don’t let it shut you down. Devices are still safe and useful if you take precautions.

Please keep this article for your records.

Please protect yourself and do not wire money to anyone you do not know. Also remember the IRS isn’t going to call you.

This information in compliments of Jen Herron-Underwood - Senior Real Estate Specialist with Howard Hanna. For more information on downsizing or senior real estate interests please contact her at 440-371-2862 or



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