The guest speaker at the February meeting of the Fayette County Retired Teachers Association was Danielle Murphy of the Ohio Attorney General’s Office.
She began by outlining some of the functions of the office. These include serving as attorneys for the state legislators, supporting local law enforcement through the Bureau of Criminal Investigation, training local law enforcement and enforcing certain laws, including those that provide consumer protection.
Murphy elaborated on consumer protection as it relates to scams. Seniors citizens are the focus of many scams because they are trusting and polite, possess more assets, are less likely to report fraud, and are often independent and alone.
Some of the tactics used by scammers include requests for money transfers, requests for information, pressure to act immediately, requests to keep the conversation a secret, guarantees to make money, requests for a large down payment, no contract or conditions left out of a contract, and sending money out of the country.
She provided warning signs to look for, such as denied credit, unauthorized charges, contacts from debt collectors, receiving unfamiliar bills or not getting mail, and errors on credit reports.
She closed with several suggestions to help reduce your risk of ID theft: shredding documents and medical info, watching for scams in the news, updating computer software, avoiding volunteer info, avoiding carrying extra personal info, monitoring financial statements and staying safe in cyberspace.
The next FCRTA meeting will be Thursday, April 5 at Grace Methodist Church. Social hour will begin at 11 a.m. with lunch following at 12 p.m.
The information for this article was provided by Bob Mowrey, recording secretary for the FCRTA.