Age of fraud: Are seniors more vulnerable to financial scams?

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Judy is 79 but reads as 15 years younger. She hops the high step into her mid-sized SUV, hits the button for public radio (not just for my sake) and expertly pilots through the streets of her seaside town.

Judy, 79, sits with a laptop.
Judy, 79, is a New Jersey woman who was defrauded out of nearly $200,000.















The plan is to visit one of the scenes of the crime, the gift card rack at a local Walmart.

Department store gift cards are a favorite money transfer device of fraudsters. Over a two-week period, just after Thanksgiving 2017, Judy got caught in an elaborate scam that cost her close to $200,000. That is a fortune to most of us, and it was a fortune for Judy.

Judy is a registered nurse, skilled in the operating room. Well into what most would consider their retirement years, she still does fill-in nursing work. She goes to exercise classes a few times a week.

“I look back and I can’t imagine what I was thinking,” Judy said. “I was like a robot.”

“I just knew I had to go to Walmart, knew what kind of cards he wanted me to get, get into the car, tear off the back, give him the numbers,” she recalled.


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