Memorial Day is a time to honor those who serve and remember those who have died in war. But sadly, it has also become a key opportunity for scammers to target those who are serving or have served their nation, especially elderly veterans.
As Memorial Day approaches, the Better Business Bureau urges consumers and donors to be aware of scammers that feed off the military:
- High priced military loans that promise a guarantee, instant approval or no credit check will often come with hidden fees. Remember that legitimate lenders will never guarantee a loan before you apply and loans that require an up front fee are likely a scam.
- Veterans' benefits buyout plans offer a cash payment in exchange for a disabled veteran's future benefits or pension payments. The cash amount is only about 30-40% of what the veteran is entitled to.
- Fake Rental Properties are stolen photos of legitimate rental properties are used in advertisements that promise military discounts and other incentives. Service members will have to pay a fee via wire transfer for security payments or a key to the property - in the end they will receive nothing.
- Phony jury duty summons - A caller clams to work for the local court system and states that the service member did not show up for jury duty and now has a warrant out for their arrest. When the victim says they never got a summons, the caller will ask for a credit card number or Social Security number to clear up the matter.