The last 12 months has been something else hasn’t it?! No one could have guessed that the world would be plunged into a pandemic and as a result, millions of people have struggled in many ways. People have had trouble with their emotions and also finances. Especially the more vulnerable people within society as they’ve had to rely on loved ones or carers to support them when it comes to their finances.
Did you know that a quarter of people aged 70 or above have suffered financial abuse? Staggering isn’t it! Whether it’s friends, family, carers or professional scammers, vulnerable people are commonly targeted.
Something that is more common than you would think is temptation theft. This is low-level theft where people slip things into the shopping basket for themselves when shopping for their vulnerable family members. It may never be noticed because it’s usually small amounts during each shop but this can soon add up to hundreds over the years!
Like many families, we don’t often talk about finances but it’s such an important topic to discuss. In the past, my wife’s Grandma always used cash to make purchases anywhere she went but in recent years, she has started to use her debit card more and more. Especially during the last 12 months because shops have been encouraging the use of contactless due to the virus.
She doesn’t use online banking due to concerns about her data and money being compromised which is fairly common for the older generation. They don’t seem to trust the online world and they have every reason to be wary! That’s how scammers can most easily take advantage of the vulnerable.
We have offered to help her with online banking but she’s still too cautious to even try it out. She has also been very adamant in the past about not lending anyone her debit card, regardless of how much she trusts them, which is sensible really!
Many people across the world have many worries about allowing loved ones or carers take care of their finances and there is now a much more secure way of achieving this …..
GuardianCard is a safe, simple and secure solution taking care of the finances of an older or vulnerable family member. Co-founders Aidan McAllister and Nick Thompson both had to care for older relatives’ finances and as a result, GuardianCard was born!
GuardianCard is just like any normal debit card and has the same functionally but here’s where it gets really good ….. the cardholder can issue a physical or virtual card to a relative or carer so they can shop or pay bills on their behalf.
All control remains with the cardholder via the GuardianCard mobile app, providing peace of mind that your finances are safe and secure. They have recently teamed up with TV presenter Jennie Bond to create their ‘In Safe Hands Report’ that explores financial abuse in much more depth.
They are on a mission to spread the word and as a result, I’ve been invited to create an account so I could see first hand for myself how it all works!
First of all, it was super easy to setup my account with GuardianCard. I was asked for all my usual details such as name, address, phone number and so on. Then I had to upload a photo of my Passport (other options are available) and take a selfie so they could complete the ID checks. I got a message to say it may take a while for them to do this but within about twenty minutes, I was up and running!
Features and Functionally
GuardianCard has some brilliant features and functionally which I’m going to highlight here!
- The cardholder can issue physical and virtual cards to multiple people
- All spending limits can be managed by the cardholder via the GuardianCard app
- You can choose where the cards can be used, whether that’s in-store, online or at the ATM
- Real-time notifications so you can see instantly what is being spent and where
- Block and unblock cards easily with the touch of a button
- Online statements are available too so you can understand the full picture of how and where your money is being spent
After logging in, I added my wife onto the account, she got an email and had to setup her own login and password which was super easy to do. Once she’d done that, I issued her with a virtual card, set the spending limit and it was instantly available to use!
She went online and made a purchase using the virtual card. As the account holder, I received a notification informing me of where the payment had been made and the exact amount.
Before using the app, I was worried about how complex it may be to get setup, especially when it comes to elderly relatives who aren’t as tech savvy! But I have to say that the whole process was super easy.
I’ve spoken to my wife’s grandma about the app, taking her through how it works and she seemed quite happy to give it a go which is great! It also gave us the opportunity to talk about finances in a more open and honest way too which can only be a positive thing.
It’s clear from GuardianCards report that financial abuse is a major problem and the pandemic has only fuelled the fire. It’s amazing to see a brand that is actively tackling these issues head on and their solution really is brilliant, offering a simple, safe and secure way to manage the finances of elderly or vulnerable family members!
This post is a paid collaboration but all thoughts are my own.