Sen. Amy Klobuchar visits Rochester to talk about how to protect seniors from fraud

(ABC 6 NEWS) – Minnesota U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar visited Rochester Wednesday to hold a roundtable discussion about protecting seniors from fraud.

Sen. Klobuchar’s bipartisan Seniors Fraud Prevention Act was enacted by President Biden last month, and the goal is to crack down on fraud schemes targeting seniors.

Sen. Klobuchar talked about this Wednesday with AARP Minnesota and the Rochester Police Department at 125 Live.

"People should be able to enjoy their golden years. They look forward to it, many people work their whole lives just to be able to retire in peace and pass money to their kids and grandkids. We want them to be able to do that, and that means stopping the fraudsters in their track," Sen. Klobuchar said.

The Seniors Fraud Prevention Act aims to get the federal government involved to stop fraud schemes.

It directs the Federal Trade Commission to create an office to educate seniors about fraud schemes while also monitoring and responding to fraud complaints.

"People are ashamed. They don’t want to report they lost their life fortune. You never even know about it and the scammer moves to the next person," Sen. Klobuchar said.

Rochester Police Department Sgt. Eric Strop agrees with the senator, that these crimes are underreported– and having a federal database to track these crimes will help too.

"Bring awareness to individuals is incredibly important. It’s one step in preventing hundreds of millions of dollars that are lost to our friends, family members, and community members," Sgt. Strop said.

125 Live, a center for active adults, caters to the senior community. The executive director, Sylwia Bujak Oliver, believes in hosting fraud prevention events to educate seniors on what to do if they ever feel like they’re being scammed.

"It’s essential that they talk amongst themselves, and they compare what happens to one another. This way, we remove the stigma from being scammed," Oliver said.

If you or a loved one are being scammed, feel free to call the number this number. It’s the AARP Fraud Helpline, 877-908-3360.