By Lynne Adkins

By Lynne Adkins

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The holidays are wonderful — unless you fall victim to a scam artist. They’re out in force and targeting senior citizens.

The holiday season means we’re home more often, have more visitors and spend money more freely.

“People are more susceptible to fall for charity scams and other types of giving scams. There’s more visitors in and out of homes around the holiday, money flows more freely and your routine is not as normal.”

All are reasons why con artists find this time of year so profitable, says Joe Snyder, director of older adult protective services at the Philadelphia Corporation for Aging.

He advises older adults to be wary, don’t let strangers in your home or on your phone.

“When people call you on the phone that you don’t know, sometimes it’s harder for older people to be rude and hang up, but hang up! Call the do not call registry — the national registry — to reduce the number of solicitations that people can call you.”

And don’t blindly trust family and friends. He says a recent survey shows that nearly half of the seniors conned are victimized by people they know.