Secretary of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts William F. Galvin launched a training program this week aimed at helping state law enforcement officials crack down on financial fraud and elder financial abuse.

The program, called Combatting Elder Financial Abuse and Securities Fraud, will focus on the impact of financial fraud and exploitation of seniors and help law enforcement recognize the signs of financial abuse and how to report it to the securities division. It will also cover common financial scams and securities fraud against the elderly.

“It is important for my office to collaborate with law enforcement throughout the Commonwealth to combat elder financial abuse and securities fraud,” Galvin said, in a statement.  

The financial exploitation of seniors is a top issue legislators across the country are looking to address.

In July, Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D, N.J.) introduced the National Senior Investor Initiative Act of 2018, which would establish a senior investor taskforce within the Securities and Exchange Commission. The task force would be required to examine and identify challenges facing senior investors and report its findings and recommend changes to Congress every two years. The bill also calls on the U.S. Government Accountability Office to study the economic costs of financial exploitation of seniors one year after it’s enacted.

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