Don't miss a story sign up to Sidmouth Herald's FREE daily newsletter CLICK HERE

Campaign to stop scammers who target elderly

PUBLISHED: 15:00 09 March 2014

A CAMPAIGN urging families to make sure elderly relatives know how to avoid being scammed has been launched by an East Devon care provider.

Home Instead says criminals using email, telephone and post to lure their victims into parting with cash or personal information see pensioners as easy targets.

Fraudsters made off with an estimated £3.5billion in the UK last year, and to help fight this Home Instead has produced a Senior Fraud Protection Kit.

Its national campaign has also teamed up with charity Think Jessica, which helps raise awareness of scams, supports victims, and is working closely with Action Fraud.

Home Instead director Mark McGlade said: “These crimes often have very serious consequences for elderly people. Devastating emotional distress and loss of confidence and trust can lead to a loss of independence.

“The sad thing is that much of this could be avoided with better awareness and education.”

One family, which asked to remain anonymous, is supporting the campaign after their elderly parents in Sidmouth were repeatedly targeted.

The couple’s daughter said: “For the last two years my mum and dad, both in their 80s, have been writing cheques amounting to over £2,000 per month to organised criminals claiming to be charities or selling ‘too good to be true’ special offers, prize winnings or medicines which claim to cure their ailments and chronic conditions.

“My parents both have demen-tia and are powerless to prevent the hundreds of letters and phone calls a month they receive trying to extort money.

“They believe that they are buy-ing genuine medicines but they are fakes and could potentially harm them.

“We need to educate everyone in the community to look out for their elderly loved ones and most vulnerable in the community.”

The Senior Fraud Protection Kit contains information on the most common scams, tools to help assess the risk of an elderly loved one, and checklists to help seniors take practical action to lower the risk of falling victim to a scam.

A senior fraud protection information workshop will take place at Twyford House in Coburg Road, Sidmouth, on Wednesday, March 19, from 2pm to 3pm.

This event is being run by Home Instead in cooperation with the Sid Valley Memory Café.

For more information call 01395 200600.

Comments have been disabled on this article.

Other News Stories

48 minutes ago

“Police would like to make residents aware of a burglary in Sidbury. Police are also reminding residents to ensure that their property is secure.”

Read more

A chain is looking to invest a six-figure sum to fully refurbish a ‘true locals’ pub’ in Sidmouth – but it needs to find a new publican first.

Read more

A café and deli is set to open on Christmas Day and to youngsters on Friday evenings after new owners took over.

Read more
Yesterday, 17:30

Scores of youngsters have had timely training in how to spot dangers on the beach and in the ocean from Sidmouth Surf Life Saving Club.

Read more
Yesterday, 16:13

Hundreds of people from all walks of life lined the streets of Sidmouth for a Mardi Gras-style send-off that would have ‘gob-smacked’ a popular town character.

Read more
Yesterday, 12:41

Rugby club photos from 1977 annual dinner found in the Sidmouth Herald’s picture archive.

Read more
Yesterday, 12:23

The television and radio broadcaster posed for a selfie with the 92-year-old from Tipton St John.

Read more
Yesterday, 08:46

Inspectors say school’s hard work is paying off to be rated across the board.

The school previously required improvement in its last report two years ago.

Read more
Tue, 18:36

The Ottery drama group is raising money for Hospiscare during its five night run. Tickets are still on sale.

Read more
Tue, 16:51

Some great pictures of the Sidmouth Rugby Club teams from 1977.

Read more

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 19°C

min temp: 14°C

Most Read News

Useful Links

Family notices
Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Submit a Story
Buy Photos
Competitions
iwitness24
Facebook
Twitter
Google Plus Page
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Read Online

Image
Read the Sidmouth Herald e-edition E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Local business directory

Devon's trusted business finder

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists


Find planning applications