Scamalot: Conquering The Con

Open September 21, 2017 – August 2018

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Fraud AARP 2Anyone, at any age, can fall victim to a scam. However, con artists most often set their sights on older adults. Seniors in the U.S. are swindled out of an estimated $37 billion per year, according to a report by True Link Financial, mainly through financial exploitation, criminal fraud and caregiver abuse.

Alcatraz East Crime Museum has collaborated with AARP Foundation on a temporary exhibit to help seniors recognize, refuse and report scams. “Scamalot: Conquering the Con,” allows visitors to encounter fraud in its various forms, including impostor scams, investment fraud and lottery scams. The exhibit also features stories of notable fraudsters, such as Charles Ponzi, and information on how the public can protect themselves from scams. “Scamalot” will explore common scams and how to avoid them, including:

  • IRS scams, in which a caller posing as an Internal Revenue Service agent threatens the victim with arrest if they don’t pay.
  • Tech support scams, in which fraudsters gain access to personal information by offering to “fix” a nonexistent computer virus.
  • Sweepstakes scams, which promise a large cash prize in return for a “claim fee.”

How You Can Help?

  • Fraud targeting older adults is on the rise. AARP Foundation’s fraud-prevention programs help seniors recognize, refuse and report scams.
  • Anyone can fall victim to scammers. Call the AARP Fraud Watch Helpline at 1-877-908-3360 to receive assistance from our call center.

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Alcatraz East hosts temporary exhibits, in partnership with outside organizations, related to crime and law enforcement topics.

If your organization is interested in proposing a temporary exhibit, please email artifacts@crimemuseum.org