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House of Reps Passes Bill to Protect Seniors from Financial Scammers

Congress has passed a legislation that aims to take proactive action in protecting senior citizens against scammers who specifically target older people. Last Wednesday, bipartisan House Representatives voted 371-48 to pass a bill that aims to put an end to criminal ploys that have taken as much as $2.9 billion yearly from unsophisticated or unsuspecting senior Americans.

The most common modus operandi involves callers who introduce themselves as IRS agents, notifying them of a tax issue. At the same time the scammer offers to help fix the tax issue if the elederly tax payer immediately sends the money supposedly owed to the IRS so that the agency can call off the pending arrest order.


Bill to Authorize Funding for Investigators and Equipment in Monitoring and Apprehending Scammers

Hopefully the bill will provide the protection needed by senior citizens, particularly those who live on their own using their retirement money to live comfortably in their old age. The bipartisan legislation authorizes the US Securities and Exchange Commission to create a Senior Investor Protection Grant Program as a means of assisting state task forces and enforcement agencies.

The said grant program will make $10 million available annually to fund hiring of additional investigators and computer professionals. Investigators will use improved technology and equipment in monitoring and catching scammers. Additionally, the funds will also be used in educating seniors about financial scams and in notifying them of new methods being utilized to dupe senior citizens.