Survey finds elderly increasingly targeted for exploitation
Wednesday, June 13, 2012 1:56 PM
Results from a survey released today show that the majority of investment fraud experts think the problem of scams targeting senior citizens is getting worse, according to a release from the Investor Protection Trust (IPT).
IPT found that nearly all experts thought elderly citizens were very vulnerable to financial scams. In a 2010 report, it found that one in five people over the age of 65 had been victims of financial exploitation.
IPT has been working to train 3,000 medical professionals to spot dementia-related financial exploitation through the Elder Investment Fraud and Financial Exploitation Prevention Program. The White House will host an event on Friday to discuss the issue on World Elder Abuse Awareness Day, according to a release.
"We need to recognize that there is a medical component to elderly investment fraud that cannot be addressed solely by regulators," said Robert Lam, chairman of the Investor Protection Institute, in a release. "As state agencies, we need to combine our efforts with the unique front-line perspective of doctors, adult protective services and other professionals to get help to victims, and those most at risk of becoming victims, at the earliest possible point."
The survey found that many elderly citizens fail to report financial exploitation since many are embarrassed, are strung along too long, and older children fail to see the signs of financial abuse, according to IPT.