Financial expert explains how to spot the red flags of scams

A Sunrise 7 interview with financial advisor Paul Dau from Edward Jones
Published: Apr. 17, 2023 at 12:40 PM CDT
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WAUSAU, Wis. (WSAW) - There is nothing more devastating than falling victim to a scam. It doesn’t matter if the amount is a few hundred dollars or several thousand.

“Scams really come in all sorts of forms,” said Paul Dau, a financial advisor from Edward Jones.

He said scams are always changing, but they do fall into specific categories such as impersonation of government agencies like IRS or Social Security Administration, along with grandparent scams and romance scams. He said lottery scams and money transfer scams are also frequent.

He said the biggest red flag is always going to be the urgency of the request.

“Usually, when they get you on the phone, it’s going to be they want something done immediately. They don’t want you to call back. They don’t want to give you time to think about what’s really happening, Dau said.

He said people need to think about if the request is something they’ve signed up for. Or if the payment method being requested is odd.

Dau explained that a financial advisor can assist and provide further education so people do not fall victim to scammers.

“When we work with our clients, we form a really personal relationship. We get to know you know what the money is there for… What the goals are. Whenever we see a money transfer to just have that second look…. Does this make sense for this client? And we can take an unbiased unemotional look at what’s happening,” Dau explained.

He also said Edward Jones has a fraud prevention team that can jump in and help prevent anything from happening or follow up afterward.

Dau said the grandparent scam is very prevalent and it’s important for people to be mindful of that.

He said if you fall victim, call your bank immediately to get their fraud team on it. He said the Federal Trade Commission has an ID theft affidavit form that really helps walk through the whole process.

Dau offers a monthly presentation each month The Landing in Wausau. This month, the topic is how to outsmart scammers. The presentation is at 11 a.m. on Tuesday, April 25 at The Landing.

Registration is required. Call 715-841-1855 or email The presentation is free for The Landing members. It is $15 to attend for nonmembers.