SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Scammers are sneaky and they tend to prey on the older population. That’s why the Sioux Falls Police Department is stepping up efforts to protect seniors.

Officers from the Sioux Falls Police Department are spending time with residents of the Good Samaritan Society, letting them know about about new scams they are seeing and what they should watch for.

Elmer Burgers is no stranger to scams. He’s had people call him in the past, claiming to be his grandson and asking for large sums of money.

“But, I had just talked to my grandson about 10 minutes before, so I knew it wasn’t true, but I kind of egged him on a little bit, but as soon as I asked what my grandson’s birthday was, he didn’t have that under control but he had everything else under control pretty good,” said Burgers.

And that’s what the Sioux Falls Police Department encourages everyone to do.

“Ask a lot of questions, and just don’t be so trustworthy with someone who’s asking for money over the phone or in an email. And if you need to call the police department, we are here for you too,” said Sgt. Aaron Benson, Sioux Falls Police Department.

“There have been circumstances where someone will come and show a message maybe they’ve received on a cell phone and just what do you think, should I click, should I not,” said Alecia O’Neill, administrator for senior living.

During their visit, officers spent time discussing different scams with residents and letting them on what to look out for. Benson says the department gets calls every week from older people who have been affected by scams.

We look to just hopefully give them a lot of information to protect themselves. A lot of it is just education. we have a real difficult time recovering money for people after it’s been sent, so if we can be in front of it and be proactive and talk to them to prevent them from sending the money, then that’s the best option we have,” said Sgt. Benson.

It’s an important lesson, no matter your age.

“I worked hard for my money and I would like to be able to spend it where I want to spend it,” said Burgers.

The FBI reports that the senior citizens have been victimized for nearly $5 billion worth of money via scams.