Senate bill seeks protection of seniors vs online scams-A A +A
Sunday, May 15, 2011
MANILA -- A bill was filed at the Senate to protect senior citizens from online and telemarketing scams.
Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago filed the Senior Financial Empowerment bill, which will task the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) to inform seniors and their caregivers of known scams.
"Perpetrators of mail, telemarketing, and Internet fraud frequently target senior citizens because they are often vulnerable aud trusting people," she said.
She said there is little data on how much Filipino senior citizens lose to these scams but that in the United States, the elderly lose around $2.6 billion a year to online and telemarketing fraud.
"As victims of such fraudulent schemes, many senior citizens reportedly pay a financial cost, having been robbed of their hard-earned life savings, and frequently pay an emotional cost, losing their self-respect and dignity," Santiago added.
If her bill is passed, the DTI will also put up a telephone hotline for reports of mail, telemarketing, and Internet fraud. It will have to forward these complaints to the Philippine National Police and the National Bureau of Investigation. (Jonathan de Santos/Sunnex)