Financial Elder Abuse

Don't get hooked by scams

Older adults are the most susceptible to being scammed because they are the age group most often targeted. Many are vulnerable because they’re trusting. Sweepstakes mail, investment schemes, sales-pitch luncheons, grandparent-scam calls – once you turn a certain age, you are bombarded by thieves trying to trick you out of your hard-earned cash.

To avoid becoming a victim, older adults need to hang up, toss out, shut the door and ignore.

Lottery scam video thumbnail   Grandma scam video thumbnail

That isn’t always easy as the scammers try new tricks. But even if it’s not their nature, the Greatest Generation and Baby Boomers must become more suspicious and self-protective.

The County of San Diego Health and Human Services and District Attorney’s Office are teaming up to alert you to the various scams and fraud in our community and provide resources to help when trouble is knocking on the door.

Stop Scams Toolkit

Don't Get Hooked pdf thumbnail

This Stop Scams Toolkit offers information about common scams, tips to avoid being a victim and important contacts to use to learn more or to help you if you are scammed. Don't Get Hooked (Spanish) pdf thumbnail Please share this information with family and friends. Together, we can protect some of our most vulnerable citizens and make San Diego County less lucrative for these con artists.

If you believe financial elder abuse has occurred, call Adult Protective Services at 1-800-339-4661.

Learn more about elder abuse at


Financial Fraud

Follow these steps if you think you’ve been a victim of any fraud that might put your finances at risk. This can include fraud related to health care/Medicare, health insurance, counterfeit prescription drugs, funeral and cemetery scams, fraudulent anti-aging products, telemarketers, Internet fraud, investment schemes, homeowner and reverse mortgage scams, sweepstakes and lottery scams, the Grandparent Scam, identity theft and legal documents.

Keep Calm and...

  • Call your bank and/or credit card company.
  • Cancel any debit or credit cards linked to the stolen account.
  • Reset your personal identification number(s).
  • File a report with the police.
  • Contact Adult Protective Services, Elder & Dependent Adult Abuse Reporting Line: 1-800-339-4661

Medicare Scams

  • Report suspicious activities to 1-800-MEDICARE

For more information about Medicare scams, visit:

Identity Theft

  • Contact your bank(s) and credit card companies immediately.
  • Contact the Identity Theft Resource Center: 858-693-7935 and
  • File a report with the police. Companies you work with to clear up identity theft issues may want to see a copy of this report.
  • File with the Federal Trade Commission by using its online complaint form at, or call the theft hotline at 1-877-ID-THEFT
  • Contact the Social Security Fraud Hotline at 1-800-269-0271
  • Put out a fraud alert to the credit-reporting agencies:
    • Experian: 1-888-397-3742
      (TDD 1-800-972-0322)
    • Equifax: 1-888-766-0008
      (TDD 1-800-255-0056 and request connection to Auto Disclosure Line at 1-800-685-1111)
    • Transunion: 1-800-680-7289
      (TDD 1-877-553-7803)

Internet Crime

Organizations with Resources on Scams and Fraud

Credit Bureaus

Other Resources