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

Campaign to stop scammers who target elderly

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.


Other News Stories

Yesterday, 13:25

Winter shoppers will be able to benefit from cheaper car parking in East Devon, thanks to a returning offer from the district council.

Read more
Yesterday, 12:22

Planned drainage works in Temple Street have been delayed a week due to poor weather conditions.

Read more
Yesterday, 11:40

Plans to extend a prominent seafront hotel have been approved – despite claims from opponents it has already ‘changed beyond recognition’.

Read more
Yesterday, 07:30

A Sidmouth man who makes health products using seaweed he collects from the Devon coastline has been recognised twice with a prestigious award and a £1,000 grant.

Read more
Yesterday, 07:00

The NHS is consulting on proposals to axe prescriptions of gluten free food in North, East and West Devon for those suffering coeliac disease - what do you think? Vote in our poll.

Read more
Wed, 16:30

An international fashion model has returned to his roots in website design to help Sidmouth businesses stay relevant online.

Read more
Wed, 15:30

Fears have been voiced for Sidmouth’s free public toilets as district bosses review their £800,000 cost in a bid to balance the books.

Read more
Wed, 11:30

Tenants will be kept updated every step of the way in a preliminary project to regenerate Port Royal, a new group has decided.

Read more
Wed, 06:02

Ethan, 16, a former student at The King’s School, Ottery St Mary, is named South West champion

Read more
Tue, 19:30

Sidmouth Surf Life Saving Club celebrated the achievements of its members and volunteers at an awards ceremony.

Read more

Local Weather



max temp: 13°C

min temp: 12°C

Most Read News

Useful Links

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

Family Notices 24

Read Online

Read the Sidmouth Herald e-edition E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up

Local business directory

Devon's trusted business finder

Show Job Lists

Find planning applications