New research has stated that people in the UK are five times more likely to be targeted by scammers than a burglar.
There have reportedly been 3.2 million cases of fraud between September 2016 & 2017, and the research discovered that 43% of elderly people, almost five million over-65s, believe they have been targeted by scammers before.
It has been suggested by campaigners that elderly people who suffer from dementia or who live alone are at the biggest risk of being targeted by scammers.
Offline fraud which can affect older people includes postal scams, investment fraud and phone scams.
Online fraud includes online dating rackets and dodgy emails.
In March last year, pension theft victims lost £8.6 million – a new record monthly high. This comes after some pensioners lost their life savings.
If defrauded in their own homes, scams can cause pensioners to die or be admitted to a care home within one year.
Caroline Abrahams, charity director at Age UK, said: “How ever tough our laws are to prevent and combat fraud, they are pretty toothless if the staff just aren’t there to enforce them.”
She added: “Government funding cuts means fraudsters have far more freedom to operate.”
Age UK is also trying to encourage banks to try and prevent scams by improving their security systems to better identify customers at risk.
The organisation said that people who are more vulnerable, elderly people with dementia being an example, should have better protection from losses.
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