Crime Watch 8

Justice Department starts National Elder Fraud Hotline

An elderly woman uses a cordless landline phone. (Photo Illustration/Karl-Josef Hildenbrand/picture alliance via Getty Images)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — The U.S. attorney general this week announced the start the National Elder Fraud Hotline, an effort to continue to help prevent older Americans from falling prey to scams.

The hotline will be staffed by experienced case managers who can provide personalized support to callers, said a news release from U.S. Attorney Josh J. Minkler, who serves the Indianapolis district.

The case managers will assist callers with reporting the suspected fraud to relevant agencies and by providing resources and referrals to other appropriate services as needed.

When applicable, case managers will complete a complaint form with the Federal Bureau of Investigation Internet Crime Complaint Center — also known as IC3 — for internet-facilitated crimes and submit a consumer complaint to the Federal Trade Commission on behalf of the caller.

U.S. Attorney General William Barr announced the hotline Tuesday in Tampa, Florida. He said, “It will provide services to adults ages 60 and older, who may be victims of financial fraud. English, Spanish, and other languages will be available.”

Barr also said, according to one report by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, financial scams and other crimes singling out older Americans quadrupled from 2013 to 2017, and involved more than $6 billion in fraud.

The Hotline’s toll free number is 833-372-8311.

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