Department of Justice launches 'Elder Fraud' hotline for scams aimed at seniors

Posted at 1:42 PM, Mar 04, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-04 19:34:33-05

The Department of Justice announced the launch of a National Elder Fraud hotline to help seniors who may be victims of fraud, or targeted by a scam.

The Wednesday announcement came in tandem with the FBI's announcement that the agency successfully caught and charged more than 400 alleged scammers in one of the largest coordinated sweeps for elder fraud cases. In each case, the alleged scammers caused losses of more than one billion dollars from their victims, according to a press release from the Department of Justice.

"Americans are fed up with the constant barrage of scams that maliciously target the elderly and other vulnerable citizens," said Attorney General William Barr in the press release. "This year, the Department of Justice prosecuted more than 400 defendants, whose schemes totaled more than a billion dollars. I want to thank the men and women of the department’s Consumer Protection Branch, which coordinated this effort, and all those in the U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and Criminal Division who worked tirelessly to bring these cases. The department is committed to stopping the full range of criminal activities that exploit America’s seniors.”

Barr announced the launch of the National Elder Fraud Hotline, which will be staffed by case managers who can provide personalized support for callers. Those case managers will have the ability to help victims by reporting the fraud cases to the right agencies, including reporting directly to the FBI if the case warrants.

The hotline is a toll-free number and can be reached at 1.833.372.8311. An online form to report internet crimes and fraud attempts is also available for those who believe they may be victims of a scam.