Local News

NC Seniors Fight Back Against Scam Artists

Posted Updated
Members of AARP are on the lookout for companies that take advantage of seniors by learning to spot them and to report them to authorities
RALEIGH — There are scam artists targeting NorthCarolina senior citizens, but a group seniors is fighting back in astate sponsored sting.

In October, the attorney general's office set up an undercoveroperation with the cooperation of the AARP to collect evidence to shutdown the scammers.Jessica Farrell says she is furious that scammers target senior citizens.

Farrell, an AARP member, says she is fed up with mail that comespromising prizes and asking for money.

Ferrell joined other AARP members last October in a training sessionto help them spot illegal mailings and the phone solicitations thatusually follow them turning the evidence over to the state. PostalInspector Bill Johnston told seniors that the scammers can be veryconvincing.

Postal inspectors told the group to guard their social securitynumbers, credit cards and bank cards and beware of techniques ripoffartists use to gain their trust.

After the training, senior citizens were asked to monitor their ownmail and look out for any suspicious materials and to monitor anysuspicious phone calls.

Attorney General Mike Easley says seniors turned in a tidal wave ofmail. His office is investigating each source and he says he is puttingthe questionable companies on notice.

Easley's office expects to take action against an undisclosed numberof operations next week. Seniors say, this time, let the scammersbeware.

Easley says out-of-state and foreign lottery mailers and other illegalcompanies often flood North Carolina before Christmas prompting aggressivefollow-up calls in the new year to those who respond to the mail.He hopes the Senior Sting Project will help keep bogus companies out ofthe state.

Copyright 2023 by Capitol Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.