Health Public Safety

Helping Older Adults Avoid Scams

Your grandson is in jail in Mexico and wants you to discreetly send bail money. You owe money for unpaid traffic tickets from long ago. A Medicare “representative” needs your personal information. You’ve won the lottery but must pay a fee to collect your prize.

The list of scams criminals use to try to steal from the elderly grows by the day. But the County of San Diego can help you learn how to avoid getting scammed.

Several county departments are teaming up with County Supervisor Dianne Jacob for the first-ever “Don’t Get Hooked” event on Wednesday, Sept. 23 in El Cajon. Seniors and caregivers will learn how to avoid scammers and other crooks.

“A lot of crooks see seniors as easy prey and try to rip them off over the phone or through email and snail mail,” said Jacob. “This event will arm our elderly and vulnerable adults with important tips on how to avoid these swindlers.”

The event is free and people will hear from victims of scams; Deputy District Attorney Paul Greenwood, an expert on elder abuse and financial crimes; and Sheriff’s Department Det. Maureen Perkins.

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Experts from the county’s Health and Human Services Agency’s Aging & Independence Services, Assessor/Recorder/County Clerk and Treasurer-Tax Collector will also be available to offer advice and answer questions.

The event is from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Ronald Reagan Community Center, 195 E. Douglas Ave., El Cajon. To attend the event, call (844) 899-1597 or register online by Sept. 17.

The event is part of a broader “Don’t Get Hooked” campaign started by Jacob and District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis to bring more attention to the issue of senior scams and to distribute information on how to avoid being scammed.

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Tom Christensen is a communications specialist with the County of San Diego Communications Office. Contact