Six Signs of Senior Identity Theft
Identity theft can happen to anyone, but in many respects seniors are easier prey. First, they are the people who have a savings account or other nest egg that an identity thief may be trying to tap. Second, they have had a career of earning and saving which sign company near me
has given them very respectable credit scores, and therefore an easy mark for someone looking to use someone else’s identity to run up a credit card bill. So, whether you are a senior or have an older family member or a senior in your orbit, here are some signs to look out for to protect against senior identity theft.
If you or the senior for whom you are a caregiver begin receiving telephone calls from creditors demanding payments for which you have no knowledge, it may be because someone has hijacked the senior’s identity and run up charges of which you are not aware. Often, a senior eager to maintain their credit standing will simply pay without asking enough questions about the legitimacy of the debt.
Be careful in going through credit card or other charge statements – even telephone bills – to be sure all charges are legitimate. There has been a lot of news lately about cramming which is when charges are added to telephone bills by workers at the companies without the owners’ knowledge.
Receiving a denial to a credit request may be a sign that someone has been using a senior’s identity to purchase goods that have not been paid for. This will lead to a lowering of credit-worthiness that is unwarranted as well as a debt in the senior’s name.
If a user name or password on an account suddenly does not work, it may be a sign that someone has stolen the information and subsequently changed the name and password to hide their transactions and their trail.
If a routine or monthly bill does not arrive, don’t wait for the next billing cycle. Call in to a service person right away. An identity thief may have stolen the senior’s information and changed the mail or e-mail address to reroute the information to another address so that the real owner will not see the charges.
Look closely at statements or routine bills for any suspicious or incorrect information. Someone with the same name as the senior or other close information may be confused with your identity. While this is not actual identity theft, you certainly do not want to be on the hook for someone else’s charges.