Financial victimization can result in a loss of self-respect, a risk to independence, a violation of security, and a great deal of psychological distress. Older persons who are victimized lose assets accumulated over a lifetime; with limited opportunities to recover from financial losses due to limited employment options, retirement, or physical or cognitive disabilities.

As a victim or family member, financial exploitation can be overwhelming and exhausting; and it’s very common to feel betrayed, totally alone, and not sure what to do. Victims may be unwilling to discuss because they are embarrassed or concerned about how others, such as their children, will view the event, with a fear of losing independence.

We also know that family members may not live in the same region as their victimized loved one; and being able to determine what has or is happening requires someone local.

That’s why we offer onsite, in home assistance to support seniors and their families.

We meet with the individuals involved, assess the current situation by asking the necessary questions, review the relevant information, meet with appropriate stakeholders, and provide recommendations on applicable actions. As requested, we can help implement the actions and monitor future activities.

When working directly with senior citizens, our focus is to provide engagement, education, and empowerment in a respectful manner; but always with the senior’s overall welfare in mind.

Re-active – The Stranger Thief:

The stranger thief tends to be the most common because of the increased use of computers and social networking by senior citizens, as well as the adaptive nature of the telemarketing scammers and cyber thieves.

Although each case is somewhat unique, we have standard steps for investigating events of theft by strangers. These steps include, but are not limited to:

  • Banking information
  • Credit Card transactions
  • Email traffic
  • Website activity
  • Travel history and logs
  • Property holdings and transactions
  • Legal documents
  • Medical documents and appointments

If a senior citizen has already been victimized by a telemarketing scammer or cyber thief, the chances of it happening again are very high. Current day telemarketing con-artists are very sophisticated – they actually sell contact information to other scammers – with the sale price based on the value already stolen. Once the victim is on the list, they will continue to be contacted, even if phone numbers and email addresses are changed. For an example of what can happen, read our History Page.

As requested, we can provide maintenance and monitoring to minimize the likelihood of re-victimization. This is a great option for seniors or their families without the experience or technical knowledge to take the necessary actions, or for families separated by distance.

Re-Active – The Trusted Thief:

Not all elder financial exploitation is committed by strangers, such as telemarketers and cyber scammers. The offender may be someone the senior citizen trusts.

In these cases, we research the appropriate information, consider the potential for undue influence, and mental impairment. When theft by a trusted person is suspected,  it is not uncommon that other types of abuse is taking place – such as threats, neglect, or even self-neglect because of guilt projection by the offender.

We review these cases very carefully, primarily because of the potential for additional abuse – and how it relates to the overall welfare and safety of the person. Although each case is unique, we follow a general process to research for the truth:

  • Banking information
  • Credit Card transactions
  • Email and SMS traffic
  • Travel history and logs
  • Security system logs (as applicable)
  • Property holdings and transactions
  • Legal documents
  • Medical documents and appointments

Our primary focus is always on the physical and emotional well-being of the senior citizen. As required, we work with law enforcement agencies, financial institutions, and medical professionals to ensure the victim is safe and secure; while also addressing the financial victimization.

If you suspect you, or a family member, is being exploited financially, you may contact our office for information and recommendations. You can also contact authorities in your area, such as local law enforcement or adult protective services.


The internet has become a world of instant information sharing, and we utilize these new technologies in our efforts to prevent elder financial exploitation.

Using Email, Twitter, etc., we engage Seniors and their Families with information we hope will prevent theft, such as:

  • Alerts on new methods being used to defraud seniors
  • Reminders about the Danger of Stranger Thieves
  • Empowerment coaching to “Just Say No and Click It”
  • Reminders about cyber thieves and the importance of anti-virus software
  • Tips to “Dump the Junk” snail mail and email
  • Reminders about the Trusted thief

Finally, our unique victim and family focused educational seminars include proactive information on how to identify telemarketing scammers, cyber thieves, and door knocking con artists, for example.

These seminars also review how to uncover exploitation, and steps to take to remedy and safeguard the senior.

If you need assistance, would like to schedule an educational seminar, or would like to help our project, please contact us.

Additional resources for elder financial fraud can be found here.