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GOP VP Nominee Vance calls Republicans champions of the middle class; President Biden is isolating with Covid while sources say Schumer privately urged Biden to step aside in the 2024 election: NY bill addresses monopolies, anti-trust loopholes; ACLU of Alabama launches Project MOVE to boost voter turnout.

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Ohio Sen. JD Vance makes an 'America First' VP nomination acceptance speech. Tough national security talk papers over GOP complexities on foreign policy. Sen. Bob Menendez resigns and President Biden catches COVID.

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It's grass-cutting season and with it, rural lawn mower races, Montana's drive-thru blood project is easing shortages, rural Americans spend more on food when transportation costs are tallied, and a lack of good childcare is thwarting rural business owners.

CT senior advocates host series about scam prevention

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Friday, February 23, 2024   

Today is the first day of AARP Connecticut's new series addressing scams and fraud. As scams become more complex, it can be harder to notice the warning signs.

In Better Business Bureau data, consumers reported 400 different scams in 2022, an increase of 90 from the year before. A primary reason older adults are targeted in some scams is that they have more money than younger people.

Kelli Lefler, associate state director for community outreach at AARP Connecticut, said losing money to scams can pose serious financial challenges.

"It can take a toll, you know; some people will only get scammed out of a couple hundred dollars, but even a couple hundred dollars is a lot of money," she said. "But it can be as drastic as losing $7,000, $10,000, $100,000 for the 'right' person with the 'right' scam."

Beyond money, scams can take a massive emotional toll as well. Lefler said it isn't true that only gullible people fall for scams, and the embarrassment of being conned can prevent people from reporting them.

The series is all online and free. Anyone looking to register can visit events.aarp.org/FightFraudFeb.

Lefler said AARP is collaborating for the series with other organizations that address or deal with fraud. Other topics will include Artificial Intelligence in April.

She said increasing robocalls and advancements in AI have created fear in some seniors.

"There's some fear that scammers can take the voice of your grandchild now," she said, "and call grandma or grandpa, saying that they're being held captive or they're in trouble with law enforcement and need help."

Last year, a Connecticut man was indicted in Wisconsin for conspiracy to commit wire fraud. He scammed Wisconsin seniors out of $200,000 in 2022 by calling them and falsely claiming to be representing one of their relatives who had been arrested and needed money for bail.

Later installments in the series might focus on cryptocurrency and romance scams.

Disclosure: AARP Connecticut contributes to our fund for reporting on Budget Policy & Priorities, Health Issues, Hunger/Food/Nutrition, Senior Issues. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


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