One response to “BBB warns seniors of Social Security phone calls; don’t give out information

  1. Mark Burrows

    As I always say, the best way to deal with such people is to fight fire with fire. Since I have started contributing to this site, I have also become more creative with people who have been calling me. The first red flag, is they ask for the head of the house, or the person who makes all the decisions. Aha! They are cold calling and have no clue who I am because they don’t have a name to work with. This will be fun.
    I tell them I am that person. They start by introducing who they are, first name and what every company they represent. Whether it is real or fraud, they get the same treatment from me.
    This is my new weapon. I go along with them but suddenly become senile when they ask a question, where I would answer, I don’t know, or I haven’t got a clue. After a while they become highly agitated and irritated while I remain pleasant and compliant but unable to answer a question. They try to psychoanalyze the situation, which amuses me since that was my career for over 25 years and not theirs, and ask if I knew where I lived, and I would answer, right here of course. They would ask my phone number, I would reply, I don’t know, you phoned me.
    It’s easy, turn their question into your reply. If they ask you what city you live in, you answer this city but it seems more like a town really.
    If they loose their cool you can ask them why they are being so rude. Here is a fact, people just do not want to deal with those they have deemed crazy. Now, I do not care for the word crazy. Mental Health is a serious business and it effects everyone, and as we get older, the risk of dementia is quite real as is schizophrenia. So, if you are going to pretend to act like one to fend off telemarketers and fraud, please keep it in your mind that there are many people that are truly suffering out there and they should be shown some respect in their presence. Although to be honest, some of them are so deep in their illness they truly are not suffering at all, because they are living in a different state of mind. Then if this is the case, they need to be treated as the person they believe they are. Family who try to bring them back only cause them more harm and they do not understand why these people wish for them to be this other person. They become isolated and even more confused to the point that they will just get up and start walking. Some theories are they are searching for who they are, and the illness just develops into a rapid state of memory loss both long and short. They are physically able to move, but without the memory of common sense, they just go until they drop from exhaustion, hunger, dehydration, or hyporthermia.
    Again I apologize for getting side tracked, but I tend to very defensive in the field of Mental Health. I am just saying, there is nothing wrong with play acting for the sake of your protection when dealing with fraudsters. I just feel it is equally important you are mindful of those whom you are portraying.

    Mark Burrows

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