Des Moines - In recognition of World Elder Abuse Awareness Day on June 15, the Iowa Insurance Division is reminding financial professionals and Iowans to be on the lookout for signs of elder financial abuse, including potential exploitation and scams. To help protect senior investors, the Iowa Insurance Division recommends investors provide the name of someone they trust as a trusted contact on their investment accounts.

“Scammers are looking to prey on unsuspecting investors and they often target older individuals. One way to help detect and even prevent financial exploitation is to create another layer of safety for investment accounts by adding a trusted contact to investment accounts,” Iowa Insurance Commissioner Doug Ommen said.  “The Iowa Insurance Division is actively working to combat cases of abuse and senior financial exploitation by providing tools and resources to protect investors.”

A trusted contact is a person authorized by the investor to allow financial firms, in limited circumstances, to contact them when there are concerns about activity in an account. A trusted contact may be a family member, attorney, accountant or another third-party that respects the investor’s privacy and understands how to handle the responsibility.

The Iowa Fraud Fighters and Lucha Antifraude websites offer more resources for individuals to protect themselves from fraud.  Broker-dealers and investment advisers can also report suspected senior financial exploitation to the Iowa Insurance Division for investigation.

Iowans are encouraged to contact the Iowa Insurance Division at 877-955-1212 or with suspicions of possible senior financial exploitation.