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Texas Department of Insurance
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January 5, 2023

Texans, especially older adults, should beware of phone, online scams


Your phone rings, you answer, and someone with a friendly voice asks for your bank account or Social Security number.

Hang up. It’s probably a scam.

Fraudsters tend to target older people, who are often more trusting and vulnerable. Older people are also more likely to talk to someone they don’t know.

In 2021, more than 6,700 Texans over age 60 reported losing more than $159 million to fraud.

Common scams:

  • A caller offers to fix a non-existent computer problem or to renew a fraudulent software or security subscription. The caller might even transfer you to fake “customer service” staff.
  • A caller pretending to be a grandchild calling from another country and needing hundreds of dollars fast. Once money gets sent outside the United States, it’s very hard to recover.
  • A call or email that says you’ve won a sweepstakes or lottery. The catch: You need to pay thousands of dollars to get the bigger prize.
  • Someone on the phone or sending an email adopts a fake identity to gain affection and confidence. The scammer builds a relationship with the victim to steal their money.

How do you avoid these and insurance scams? Listen to The Texas Insurance Podcast, featuring tips from Tim Morstad of AARP Texas.

View podcast Q&A:  How older adults can avoid scams

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