October is National Crime Prevention month—a time when the National Crime Prevention Council (NCPC) and their “spokesdog” McGruff ask us to join them in working to “Take A Bite Out Of Crime®.”
Since the first national Crime Month in 1984, NCPC has worked with local law enforcement, government agencies, civic groups, schools and businesses, and other organizations to help spread the word about crime prevention and personal safety.
This year, NCPC has launched a specific effort to prevent financial fraud, which costs Americans more than $50 billion each year. According to the NCPC, financial fraud is a crime that is vastly under-reported. In fact, the agency suspects between 40 to 60 percent of victims do not step forward. Victims either feel nothing can be done to recoup their money or feel too embarrassed that they fell for a scam. Our senior citizens are part vulnerable.
Amazingly, a FINRA Foundation study found more than 80 percent of adults 40 and over who were surveyed had been approached by someone they believe was looking to scam them. Email solicitations were the most prevalent, with 67 percent of respondents saying they had been contacted that way.
This month, talk about financial fraud with family and friends. You can also download your free copy of NCPC’s 2013-2014 Crime Prevention Month kit titled: Protecting Our Assets: Keeping Communities Safe from Financial Fraud.
The more we educate ourselves and feel comfortable talking about financial fraud, the easier it will be to fight this growing crime.