The man had already been reported missing when he was seen riding his moped along the beach at around 1.30pm on Friday.
Police cordoned off the area and attempted to approach the man, yet around half an hour later he dismounted from the moped and walked into the sea to knee depth.
Several officers also entered the water and led him to safety. He was later taken to hospital.
Inspector Ryan Chapman of North Yorkshire Police said: “The response officers at the scene displayed great bravery by following a man in distress into bitterly cold sea water, to secure him and keep him safe. I’d also like to thank the people of Scarborough for their patience and understanding while we dealt with the incident.”