How do I protect my mom with Alzheimer's from scammers calling offering delivery of a prepaid medical alert system?


My mother has Alzheimer's and lives at home on her own. I'm with her during the day, but leave at night.
She has been receiving recorded calls telling her that a medical alert system has already been paid for and they just need information from her to make the delivery.
I've been there a couple of times when she's received the calls and hung the phone up before anything happened. We've talked about never giving information over the phone, but I'm afraid she won't remember.
Is there anything I can do to protect her? Is there some way to block these calls?

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My husband has dementia and was harassed by these Lottery/Scammers for one year. I reported them to FTC, National Fraud Org., Post Office, finally changed the home phone number and his cell number and no more phone calls, but the envelopes keep coming. I trash them before he sees them. They pray on the elderly and there are no lotteries in foreign countries. Good luck, it is a nightmare for all of us to keep these predators away from our loved ones money!
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I agree with Kathryn and Wyndie about removing your mom's checkbook and credit cards. My mom was called constantly by "marginal" charities who operated under names similar to respected charities. They would ask her to pledge money and then send her what looked like a bill to collect her pledge. These organizations share or sell their contact lists to each other, so the number of calls increases rapidly after one of them gets a pledge from the person. Also, any "charity" that gets a donation will call the donor multiple times at shorter and shorter intervals. The "do not call list" will not stop these calls because charities are exempt from these regulations.

After I took over mom"s checkbook, one of these organizations called her again. When she told them she didn't have a checkbook, they asked for her credit card number, which she provided despite the fact that I had repeatedly told her never to give her card number over the phone. When I saw the charge on her statement I had to cancel the card.
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1. Availability: Seniors are seen as a target because they are retired and less mobile, and at
home for the calls. Scam artists can troll for victims because they can call or drop by.
2. Isolation: Seniors are often alone because families move away and sometimes have little or no
interaction with loved ones. Some seniors don’t have others to help review large decisions.
3. Loneliness: Because of their isolation, seniors’ friendships often can be limited, and this can
make them vulnerable to that friendly cold caller who drops by the house. Some scams are even
perpetrated by seemingly trusted people who work to build new friendships with older adults and
then prey on their vulnerabilities.
4. Sickness: Chronic health issues mean that many older adults have difficulty maintaining their
property. Scam artists know that. A senior may rely on outside sources for help. Unscrupulous workers can bilk seniors out of thousands of dollars for a job that should only cost hundreds of dollars.
Dementia can exacerbate the problem.
5. Prosperity: Money is one of the most notable reasons for senior vulnerability. Scammers see
them as a supply of wealth that includes homes, property, life savings and other assets.
Top 5 Reasons Why Seniors are Targets
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Never underestimate the resourcefulness of scammers. Some drive
around neighborhoods during the day, looking for older adults working
in the yard or getting their mail. Scammers make a note of addresses,
return and try to sell the seniors on an unnecessary repair, such as
getting their roofs fixed.
Maybe it’s time to sit down with your senior loved one and calmly
talk about scammers. If you and your senior live in different cities,
it’s a good idea to contact other relatives, friends and neighbors
who could periodically check on them or consider the services of
Home Instead Senior Care®. Don’t delay in contacting local law
enforcement if you think someone has defrauded your senior or
might be trying to do so.
Contact local law enforcement if you think someone has scammed your senior or
might be trying to do so. For more about protecting your seniors from scam
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If phone has voicemail function:
- Set to minimal number of rings (usually 2) before voicemail activates
- Only answer when caller is family/friends as they identify themselves
- Inform friends and family of this and for them to identify themselves as will answer if you are home
- Coach your mom NOT to answer unless they hear that it is family or friends
- If your mom is not really able to discern this then try coaching her NOT to answer period (you can return legitimate calls later if you are not there)
- Telemarketers usually hang up when they hear voicemail
- Even when telemarketers/scammers leave message, they do not access your mom directly and you have record to report to police if needed

Hope this helps.

Best Wishes,
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If you have the Panasonic KX line of phones, there is a "Call Block" feature there that allows blocking of calls for free--the blocked number rings once but "Blocked Caller" shows up. In addition, the Panasonic KX phones also have a feature called "silent mode" which you can set to not ring from one time to another. Later, you can see who called and decide whether or not to return them. I use that for my mom while she's asleep and I step away for awhile.
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I have this same exact call coming into my home, it is a live caller not a recording. I got the call and told him quite bluntly that he was full of____, and hung up. Now I wish I had found out the name of his company and asked for their phone number to at least be able to alert the police, national do not call registry and news media. Elderly people and their care givers need to be alerted to this scam. I have also had people calling from India stating they are calling from Medicare, wanting us to purchase supplies for diabetes, even though I have told them repeatedly, no one is diabetic, and screamed at them that I knew they were NOT CALLING FROM MEDICARE!!!!!!

This is what was happening when I stepped in and took over as POA for Mom. I lived with her and she got solicitor calls all day long every single day. I began answering the phone and telling people she no longer accepted any phone calls and told them to immediately remover her from their list. I put her on the National Do Not Call Registry numerous times to no avail, most calls now come from outside the US so they cannot be stopped or if you spent time talking to them or asked for info from anyone they can continue to contact you no matter what.

When I have to leave the house and no one else is home except Mom I use call forwarding and have the calls sent to my phone, so Mom can make outgoing phone calls but does not receive incoming calls. I do not like this situation either as I want the ability to be able to speak to her/call her if I need to tell her I am going to be gone a bit longer. I do not think my Mom would be able to use a cell phone even a Jitterbug as her memory is only about 15 minutes long. Since I have cable I can only block a small number of phone numbers and you have to know their number to block it which is not always possible. I use to have a device that you plugged your phone into and solicitors calls would be blocked but it quit working and I do not think they are even made any longer.

I took away the checkbook etc to stop the bleed of money as well as taking any credit cards etc. Honestly, if your Mom is this bad though I think you need to consider moving her home with you or providing a night time care giver. This is why I live with my Mom, however I am no longer married, which may not be your case.
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Better yet, just disconnect her landline and give her the Jitterbug Touch phone.
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1. Make sure your mom has no access to credit cards or bank account #'s

Then let them send what ever they want to , you didn't order it and you don't have to pay. My guess is they will not send it without a bank or credit card # :-)
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The FDIC has a Money Smart for Older Adults program which may provide some helpful advice. It has a section on telephone scams and identity theft. It's available as a downloadable PDF. You might also consider place a list of phone numbers for family, friends, or any support people by the caller ID so she can compare incoming numbers.
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I don't know. But, I have similar problems with magazine subscriptions being sent with a past due notice and they seem impossible to cancel! I have no way of knowing if they called and she agreed to it
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