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Connect with a Banker and Protect Seniors from Financial Exploitation

Apr 05 2019

Older adults lose as much as $36.5 billion each year to elder financial abuse. Financial abuse can take many forms, from illegal debits to third-party scams and even unauthorized withdrawals by an approved caregiver. With 10,000 Baby Boomers turning 65 every day for the next 11 years, scammers are working overtime to defraud older Americans.

The elderly are often targeted because of the wealth they have amassed over their lifetimes. Many have access to pensions, 401ks, individual retirement accounts, Social Security and other resources. While anyone is susceptible, individuals who are socially isolated, experience cognitive impairment or are physically disabled are especially at risk.

Losses from abuse are significant and take a toll emotionally, financially and even physically. Victims often become depressed and experience intense feelings of shame, as well as fear. Many lose their savings and their homes, which in turn, increases their risk of mortality. The good news, however, is that elder financial abuse can be prevented. Education and collaboration are paramount to protecting older adults and banks all across the country are working to safeguard older adults.

The American Bankers Association Foundation launched the Safe Banking for Seniors program to combat elder financial abuse. Through the national campaign, community-based organizations, senior centers, faith-based ministries, police departments, foundations, agencies and other groups can partner with local bankers to learn about identifying scams, preventing identity theft and financial caregiving.

Using the Foundation’s online portal–FinEdLink–organizations can submit a request to receive a free banker-led presentation on how older adults and their families can protect themselves from financial exploitation. Visit www.aba.com/FinEdLink and click the gold request form to connect with a banker today!