$356,000 to protect your computer? Feds promise 'all-out attack' on scams targeting the elderly
WASHINGTON – One man, alarmed at the thought that hackers might attack his computer, shelled out $14,990 to a company promising a "fix" that would keep it safe.
Eight months later, the 68-year-old from Hawaii mailed the same company a check for $24,999 more. And he kept paying. All told, the unnamed man, who suffers from dementia, sent about $356,000 in checks and wire transfers, unaware that the computer security alert was part of a network of elaborate scams that the government says cost the nation’s elderly and infirm hundreds of millions of dollars over the past year alone.
The case is part of a heartbreaking archive of court documents filed in just the past year, charging more than 200 suspects with trying to swindle 2 million Americans, most of them elderly.