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51 FOUR Financial elder abuse Mary Gilhooly, Deborah Kinnear, Miranda Davies, Kenneth Gilhooly and Priscilla Harries Introduction A true story The topic of financial elder abuse is rather closer to home than I might have wished. During this research project, my 94-year-old mother, and then subsequently my 95-year-old stepfather, fell for a financial scam. The scam consisted of a letter arriving in the post telling my mother that she had won US$800,000 in the Publishers Clearing House (PCH) sweepstakes. All that mother had to do was pay the taxes of US$800

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Introduction This article uses the study of fraudulent loans targeted at vulnerable groups to explore wider dynamics of structural poverty ( Royce, 2022 ) and social injustice in Mexico. With this example we seek to draw attention to the role of the many vulnerabilities and predations that typify the lives of those in poverty, and the role they play within the reproduction of poverty. The empirical case focuses on the testimonies of interviewed victims of loan scams, all located in the Mexican state of Nuevo León. Mexico is a country with relatively high

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readings Australian Competition and Consumer Commission ( 2019 ) Targeting Scams: Report of the ACCC on Scam Activity 2018 . Available from: https://www.accc.gov.au/publications/targeting-scams-report-on-scam-activity/targeting-scams-report-of-the-accc-on-scam-activity-2018 . Button , M. and Cross , C. ( 2017 ) Cyber Fraud, Scams and Their Victims , London : Routledge . Button , M. , Lewis , C. and Tapley , J. ( 2009 ) A Better Deal for Fraud Victims , London : Centre for Counter Fraud Studies . Cross , C. ( 2020 ) ‘ Preventing fraud

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then let it go for 3 months, something like that. Then I put another 100,000 into it and let it run for another 3 months. Then I sat back thinking I am doing alright here, that was a good investment. Then the updates stopped on the website and I rang the guys up and the phone calls didn’t work then the next thing the website disappeared. All this happened in a week, so the updates stopped, the phone calls stopped coming, then a week later the website disappeared. I think it was the day before the website disappeared that I recognised that this was a scam

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scams operate virtual pyramids, investment hoaxes, entrapment, ‘scareware’, false auctions, advanced fee tricks and so on, promoted and enacted online, to defraud remote victims. The scope to access, conceal and evade online is huge, but the scope to incite, to persuade victims to give out personal information or to pay for something in error, has its limits. Still, what distinguishes fraud from robbery is that the victim is persuaded (incited) to hand over money – whether that be a bank persuaded to hand over a customer’s money because they believe the request for

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to request.’ ‘But how? Our entire system is encrypted. We have a full suite of access controls and cybersecurity checks.’ ‘My guess is somebody probably fell for a phishing attack. Gave their username and password away. Probably still doesn’t realize they were stung. Then someone got in and dismantled your security from the inside.’ ‘Like that damn ransomware attack when some idiot in HR fell for a scam.’ Todd got to his feet and started to pace behind his desk. ‘So this isn’t the first time!’ ‘It’s almost impossible to protect yourself from idiots. We

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found that more public education about the challenges of donated goods was still required, as well as coordination of matching needs ( 2020b , Rec 21.1). In its assessment of the issues related to crowdfunding, the 2020 Commission noted that there was an unfounded public expectation that funds would be distributed by charities almost immediately, rather than over a multi-year recovery period, and a chaotic jumble of state fundraising laws were ineffective in dealing with over 500 digital scams (Australian Competition and Consumer Commission ( ACCC), 2020 ). It

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requirements for iden- tification documents for people who have come to the UK from abroad. There are continuing concerns about limited access to banking for some groups, such as for people with learning disabilities, and about potential fraud and scams to steal from people’s accounts. One recent problem concerns pensioners who were ‘cold-called’ by the DWP and urged to claim Pension Credit, and who were asked, in the same call, to give bank account details so that payment could be made. This goes against all advice that is normally given about divulging bank account details

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bookmakers. All of this is without the individual in the story being subject to any proper medical or functional assessment. The message in this newspaper story goes beyond the individual’s case and puts a question mark in the mind of the newspaper’s readership over the legitimacy of many, if not the majority of, disability benefit claimants. Conclusion The use of language in these stories helps to reproduce a dominant ideology or moral standpoint: ‘scrounger’, ‘scam’, ‘cheat’, ‘fraud’. This is reinforced by the selection of the stories during the 12-month period in

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capacity to engagement with the internet and social media as a result. Due to this focus, guided by the judgments of the Court of Protection, we are drawn in the main towards vulnerable adults with a learning disability or brain injury, and, we would observe, mainly younger adults. Clearly, this is not the only type of online harm affecting vulnerable adults in our society, and we hear many anecdotes of older people with, for example, dementia being subject to online scams and financial fraud. While the literature in this area remains sparser and indeed contradictory

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