7 steps seniors can take to avoid fraud

While anyone at any age can fall victim to a scam, fraud targeting older adults is on the rise. And that’s a concern for many of us as we all spend more time online.

In fact, 86 per cent of respondents to a 2022 RBC survey say they’re worried fraudsters will increasingly target seniors as they are online more. There has also been a greater number of online scams and phishing attempts against seniors.

Fortunately, there are many simple steps you can take to help you stay safe online.

  1. Be aware that fraudsters may pose as government or bank staff, family members, law enforcement or other trusted people. Never give out money or sensitive information to a caller, by text or by email. If you’re not sure about something, call a family member, your financial advisor or your bank.
  2. Never click on a link or download an attachment from an unknown source. Even if it looks to be legitimate, verify the sender before taking any action.
  3. Keep your information secure by using strong, unique passwords and passphrases; and ensure your anti-virus software and internet browser are always up to date.
  4. When online, don’t enter login information or credit card details unless you are sure the site is legitimate. Red flags include poor grammar or spelling errors, a URL that doesn’t match the company’s main site or a lack of a security lock symbol in the address bar.
  5. When shopping online, remember that an offer too good to be true usually is. Trust your instincts, ask questions, do your research and be extra cautious.
  6. Social media provides fraudsters with a large pool of potential victims. Be mindful of the personal information you post online and take advantage of privacy settings.
  7. Stay connected to your finances and set up alerts for suspicious activity on your bank account or credit card.

Find more tips at rbc.com/privacysecurity.

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