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Would you be so kind?

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Tuesday, October 24, 2017

It is believed—and rightly so—that the younger generation is more computer-savvy than the elderly. But few wonder about the possible implications of that. Elderly people grew up in an era when PCs and mobile devices didn't exist. Yes, many of them do use the Internet. And when it comes to configuring anti-virus software, some of them have a jump on younger users (the author has met such people in person). And yet…

Elderly people are more inclined to trust others. If personal contact is established, people become responsible for their words and are less likely to deceive others. Meanwhile, anonymity reigns on the Internet, and shame doesn't make people change their nicknames. Do elderly people understand that? When they come to think about it, perhaps, they do, but … How many times have they given their money to strangers?

Fraudsters play on their fears.

An elderly woman rushed to withdraw one thousand dollars from her account after she received a call from "the Healthcare Ministry” no less. During the call she was informed that a secret laboratory had produced a unique drug promising profound rejuvenation. "Chronic illnesses are cured in a month or even less".

You’d think that nowadays no one would believe a message like "I got into an accident. Please send me some money" from an unknown number. No one except the elderly. One early morning, a grandfather received a message of this kind and decided his son was in trouble. He sent a substantial amount to the number specified and, because of the stress, ended up in hospital with a heart attack.

Your parents have probably told you about a new miraculous medicine…

Some scammers have managed to victimize people two or three times. For example, a couple of months after an elderly person’s been duped into buying miracle pills (when they’ve already realised the pills don't work), they receive a call ostensibly from a manager who apologizes and claims that the entire shipment was defective. As compensation, he offers to transfer ninety thousand dollars to the victim's account. But in order to have them file a valid report with the revenue service, the victim needs to pay in advance 13% of the amount as an income tax.

#Internet #fraud #psychology

The Anti-virus Times recommends

  • When did you last visit your parents—talked about their problems and worries? There is never enough time… Don’t wait until it’s too late.
  • Did you help them install and configure an anti-virus? Perhaps, you can tell scammers from honest people, but can your parents?
  • Have you told your parents about Internet security basics?

Research conducted by Experian showed that in 2015, elderly people living in the country ranked second among fraud victims. These people are not particularly interested in new technologies and don't use broadband Internet connections. This category accounts for 1.6% of Great Britain's population, but scammers’ growing interest in this group of people is somewhat worrying: the number of victims belonging to this category increased by 15.4% during the year.


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