Methodology of Economic Crimes week 7 Individual
Week 7: Week Seven - Individual Work
Only 300 words
|Instructional Objectives for this activity: |
Summarize the characteristics of elder economic abuse.
|Review the material in your text about elder financial abuse. In the following assignment, you will focus on and summarize some of the specific aspects of this abuse that were mentioned in your text.|
Your completed paper should be 300-words in length (1 page) and cited in proper APA format.
- What are some of the common characteristics shared by the elderly who are most susceptible to financial abuse?
- List and discuss two techniques used to defraud the elderly.
Read the portions of Chapter 5, "Financial Elder Abuse," on pages XXXXXXXXXXand page 186.
The federal Trade Commission (FTC) is the federal government’s principal consumer protection agency, with broad jurisdiction extending over nearly the entire economy, including business and consumer transactions on the telephone, the Internet, and elsewhere. Under the Federal Trade Commission Act, Congress has directed the FTC to prohibit unfair or deceptive acts or practices and unfair methods of competition.
The FTC actively enforces a broad range of consumer protection programs that protect all consumers. Many of these programs have special relevance to older Americans. Indeed, protection of older consumers continues to be an important focuses of the FTC. The top frauds committed against the elderly include prize of sweepstakes promotions, health care products or services, foreign money offers, and advance-fee loans.
Financial crimes against the elderly fall under two general categories: fraud committed by strangers, and financial exploitation by relatives and caregivers.
Fraud committed by strangers generally involves deliberately deceiving the victim with the promise of goods, services, or other benefits that are nonexistent, unnecessary, never interceded to be provided, or grossly misrepresented. There are hundreds of frauds, but offenders generally use a small subset of these against the elderly.
United states Department of Justice however, given that each state crafts it own laws, there are significant differences that make a description of national legislation concerning elder financial abuse impossible. These differences tend to apply in the following six areas:
- Definition of elderly;
- Definition of abuse, or whether physical abuse, sexual abuse, financial abuse, or neglect;
- Classification of abuse as criminal or civil;
- Standard for reporting abuse;
- Methods for investigating abuse; and
- Recommended sanctions.
There are a number of other diseases that can cause developmental disabilities that inhibit their judgment and decisions making abilities can make them dependent on others for their well being making them a target for caregivers and relatives.
The prevailing stenotype of elderly fraud victims is that they are poorly informed, socially isolated individuals- potentially suffering from mental deterioration- who cling to old-fashioned ideas of politeness and manners that interfere with ability to detect fraud. It is true that dementia and other cognitive impairments sometimes play a role in elder fraud and financial exploitation. For seniors with advanced impairments, responses requiring their participating mat have limited effectiveness.
However, recent research has refuted prevailing stereotypes, characterizing the majority of potential supposed. A major AARP (formerly known as the American Association of Retired Person) survey identified fraud victims as relatively affluent and well- educated, with extensive networks of family and friends. This survey identified several key points:
- Victims were likely to believe fraudulent sales pitches, thinking that their chance of winning was good and that the prize offered for a fee were a good bargain.
- Over two-thirds of the respondents reported they had difficulty telling fraudulent and legitimate pitches apart, despite the fact that 90 percent had heard about telemarketing fraud.
- Many victims reported having difficulty ending a conversation with a telemarker, even when they believed the offer was fraudulent.
A number of researches have noted that the following personal factors affect the extent to which people are likely to be victimized:
- Home ownership;
- Likelihood of seeking advice before a purchase;
- Knowledge of source of consumer information and consumer rights;
- Financial risk-taking behavior;
- Openness to marking appeals;
- Knowledge of the existence of fraud, scams, and misleading practices; and
- Ability to hang up on telemarketers.
The following are key moments that put the victim at risk in the typical fraud transaction. They have clear relevance to points of intervention:
The victim makes the initial contact, or takes steps that lead to the initial contact, indicating receptivity to the pitch.
The victim provides information about him or herself that helps the offender to carry out the fraud.
The victim believes the offender’s scenario or pitch.
The victim writes a check, gives a credit card number, or otherwise provides access to funds.
In addition, certain traits might make people prone to fraud or financial exploitation. Some of these are considered positive, such as good citizenship, compassion, generosity, respect for authority, and a trusting nature. Others are less desirable, such as being careless, susceptible to flattery, or easily intimidated. Some factors that seem irrelevant on the surface may also contribute to the likelihood of fraud victimization, such as being in junk mail lists, belonging to organization; making purchases over the phone or Internet; moving; buying a house, car, or appliance; investing; and donating to charity.
Consumer fraud relies on the manipulation of victim’s emotions to get them to agree to a transaction. Emotional ploys include making the consumer feel he or she is part of a special group receiving VIP services, and creating a sense of urgency that prevents further research into the transaction. In addition, offenders may refuse to accept “no” for an answer, have an endless supply of rebuttals for excuse the victim offers, and have an aggressive style that intimidates the victim into complying. These tactics are essential components of fraud and are effective primarily because of their appeal to the natural human desires to feel special, to find a bargain, and to please.
Particularly when investigating financial exploitation, vexing questions often arise as to whether the victim understood the transaction, appreciated the value of what he or she gave away or signed over, and comprehended the implorations of the transaction. Three concepts are particularly critical when analyzing the range of frauds and associated crimes:
Flax, Michael M. (2005). Economic Crimes
(Criminal Investigations Series), Law Tech Custom Publishing, Inc.