Event teaches elderly how to protect against scams

According to the National Council on Aging, financial scams are now considered "the crime of the 21st century."

The event taught the elderly what to watch out for and what proactive steps people can take to protect themselves.

More than 300 elderly people showed up for the lunch and learn in Bismarck to get some helpful tips on what to do if you get that 'sketchy call.'

"If it smells funny, stop, think, and report it or check in on it. Check in to either the AARP fraud watch network website, or talk to the attorney general's office and see if it's fraudulent," says Josh Askvig, State Director.

Officer Pat Renz with the Bismarck Police Department says the best way to prevent getting scammed is to be informed and not be so trusting.

"Don't believe people at face value. Check into it more before you hand over money, and check into it more before you believe what they're telling you is actually true. Weather it's on the phone, through the internet, or in person," says Officer Pat Renz.

Many attendees who went to the event say it was very helpful.

"Anything I can learn that's going to protect myself and my family, I'm willing to try," says Mary Hayes, resident.

"I think as we as older people need to know what kind of scams there are out there and then I can help other people. Tell them what I have learned, and hopefully keep them from being scammed too," says Linda Weldon, resident.

If you think you've been scammed AARP recommends you to contact the police department and ask them for help and information.
AARP does events like this to help the elderly get the most up to date resources and tools to keep them safe from scammers.