Elderly to learn scammers' tricks

04:04, Jul 26 2012
BE WARNED: Age Concern’s Jess Breeze, right, NMIT student Joanna Clouston, centre, and Positive Ageing Forum chairwoman Ruby Aberhart are promoting a seminar to help older folk avoid net scams.

Internet scams are becoming a real problem for everyone so Age Concern has decided to do something to help older folk understand the dangers by holding a seminar on the subject.

The two-hour seminar will be held at the Senior Citizens rooms on Oxford St in Richmond on Tuesday, August 7. Internet safety expert John Parsons has been invited to present the free, two-hour seminar for senior citizens which will cover all aspects of digital scamming.

Age Concern’s elder abuse and neglect prevention adviser Jess Breeze said they organised the seminar after discussions with Nelson Tasman Positive Ageing Forum chairwoman Ruby Aberhart.

‘‘Ruby came to me earlier this year and said there were lots of older people who wanted to learn how to text. Then we got onto the subject of internet scams and she suggested we should hold a seminar so that’s what we are doing.’’

Jess said many older people used digital technology but didn’t know the dangers and consequently were more vulnerable to scams. She said the seminar would be useful because ‘‘the more knowledge they have, the safer they will be’’.

Ruby said older people also tended to be ‘‘more trusting’’ and that, combined with a lack of knowledge of the internet, made them one of the highest risk groups.

‘‘I know lots of older people who talk to these people and listen to what they have to say. I don’t, I just say goodbye and put the phone down.’’

Ruby said the seminar was timely because an increasing number of senior citizens were using cellphones and the internet to keep in contact with their families and friends.

The seminar will be held from 10am to noon.