By Hannah Torregoza
Reelectionist Senator Nancy Binay is now pushing for a bill that seeks to shield senior citizens from scammers.
In filing Senate Bill No. 2158, the proposed “Seniors Fraud Prevention Act,” Binay said it is imperative that the government puts in place a mechanism protecting senior citizens from any form of abuse and exploitation.
“It is our duty to protect and free senior citizens from abuse and exploitation of any kind,” Binay said in her bill.
The senator said the bill directs the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) to establish an advisory office within the Bureau of Trade Regulation and Consumer Protection to assist and support the agency in the prevention of fraud and scams targeting seniors’ finances.
The proposed bill seeks to protect and promote the welfare of our senior citizens by creating an advisory office that will help the DTI alert consumers about new scams targeting senior citizens.
The bill also calls for the establishment of an effective complaints system to ensure that reports of fraud are given immediate action.
The advisory office shall monitor the market for mail, television, Internet and telemarketing fraud including recorded message telephone calls or “robocalls” targeting seniors.
It will also be tasked to disseminate to the senior citizens, their families and caregivers the information, including descriptions of the most common fraud schemes, complaints regarding such scams either through telephone or website.
The advisory office will, in turn, submit the reported complaints to the appropriate law enforcement agencies, including the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI).