Ala. Attorney General: Scams continue to grow

State combating scams targeting the elderly

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - It’s estimated that older Americans lose $2.9 billion each year to financial schemes and scams according to the federal government.

Wednesday, Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall said scammers targeting the elderly is a growing problem.

“I think we see scams continuing to grow and I think part of that is because of technology," Marshall said.

Steve Griffin with the Alabama Silver Haired Legislature, a group representing senior citizens, said scams can pose a problem for those on a fixed income.

“At certain ages there’s limited income," Griffin said. “It’s always important to save every dollar.”

To combat scammers, Marshall said the state has worked with the FCC to allow wireless carriers to block some phone calls. Alabama is also one of the states that joined a federal initiative to stop robocalls.

“Most of those that engage in thee crimes don’t live in Alabama. Don’t live in the United States. That’s why it is difficult for law enforcement to be able to hold someone accountable," Marshall explained.

He said much of the efforts should be focused on preventative measures.

“The greatest effort that we can make is being proactive on the front end to prevent this crime from taking place as opposed to the prosecution where we might not be able to find the bad guys,” he said.

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