Think Jessica

Marilyn Baldwin spent five years trying to help her elderly mother Jessica, who was a victim of numerous scams.

The sheer extent of Jessica’s problem was revealed when Jessica was taken ill and hospitalised. Marilyn discovered her mother had received around 30,000 scam mail letters at home and had given thousands of pounds to scammers. All in the belief that everything the scammers told her, by post or over the phone, was true.

Jessica’s story

Jessica had a condition which is becoming known as Jessica Scam Syndrome (JSS). People with JSS have been ‘brainwashed’ by scammers, who make them believe they have won the lottery or are guaranteed other huge winnings.

Jessica died in 2007, still waiting for her promised prizes.

In 2007 Marilyn founded Think Jessica, a charity helping to protect elderly and vulnerable people from scams which come through the postal system and criminals who contact them by telephone.

Marilyn’s aim is to educate others about the powerful phycology criminals use to trap their targets and make them understand how this is strong enough to turn them against their loved ones and those trying to help them.

Think Jessica is now a registered charity supported by countless agencies, organisations and police forces nationwide and is committed to making people aware of the danger and financial implications caused by postal and telephone scams, educating professionals and protecting the most vulnerable members of society from illegal practices.

Everyone is at risk, but Think Jessica surveys have shown the majority of scammers use mailing lists which categorise people as being elderly or vulnerable in some way.

Be vigilant

BT is proud to support Think Jessica. You can find more information about Think Jessica campaigns at our new scam awareness pages, part of our Including You site. There you’ll also find lots of useful information that you can share with family and friends such as handling unwanted calls.

They know older people might not be able to recognise a con when they see one, and prey on their loneliness.”

Think Jessica has a website and booklet packed with helpful steps to help with understanding postal and telephone scams, how to protect yourself and your loved ones, make a report or find help.

To learn more, visit Think Jessica.

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