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Why Are Older Adults More Likely to Fall for Scams?

Older adults might be more likely to fall for scams because of changes that occur in the brain during the aging process. Research has found that people older than 55 had less activity in the anterior insula, the part of the brain that is responsible for evaluating truth and risk, and were less able to identify untrustworthy faces. Older adults with depression or low social fulfillment might be the most likely to fall for scams. One study found that the prevalence of fraud was more than 200% higher among participants who reported extreme depression and perceived low social fulfillment.

More about scams against the elderly:

  • It has been estimated that financial scams against the elderly cost about $3 billion US Dollars (USD) each year.

  • Out of the cases of reported fraud against the elderly, 90% are committed by members of the victims’ own families.

  • Almost one-third of all scams via telephone are perpetrated against those age 60 or older.

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More Info: ncoa.org

Discuss this Article

whitewater
Post 5

If 90 percent of the $3 billion dollars is being taken by relatives of the elderly (who, presumably, inherited their untrustworthy faces from their victims), at least the money is staying in the family. Something to be said for that.

anon345242
Post 3

Just a thought. Perhaps older people grew up in a time when fraud and corruption were less prevalent than today; when people could actually be trusted.

anon345221
Post 2

Whats this another attack on aged brains! Wheres AARP when you need them? More junk!!

Flywheel1
Post 1

What, pray tell, is an untrustworthy face?

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