MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - WSFA 12 News hosted a 12 News Defenders phone bank Wednesday.
Phone lines were open from 4 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. for viewers to ask questions related to scams and fraud.
There is no shortage of scammers out there who are busy trying to separate you from your money or personal information.
According to data from AARP, the IRS and local law enforcement, the top three scams in Alabama are debt collection, imposter scams and identify theft.
“If somebody is calling you and asking for your personal information, banking information, social security number, that type of thing, hang up because that’s not a legitimate call,” said Montgomery County District Attorney Daryl Bailey.
We partnered with AARP and local and state law enforcement for the phone bank.
Representatives from these organizations provided advice on how protect yourself from scams and discuss what to do if you become a victim.
But thousands of people continue to fall victim. And unfortunately older American are particularly vulnerable to those type of scams.
“They are more trusting, they respect authority. Sometimes they might be a little more cocky even. You know they think they are safe,” said AARP Alabama Communications Director Evey Owen.
And with just about any of the frauds and scams that are out there, there is one thing you can do that will assuredly keep you from becoming a victim.
“Don’t even answer the phone unless you know the number that is calling you," said Bailey. "Get the answering machine to pick it up and if its legitimate you can call them back.”