AARP: Consumer Protection and Financial Security Go Hand In Hand
AARP Connecticut & the Connecticut Department of Banking Participate in 10th Annual National Consumer Protection Week
This news release was issued jointly by the Department of Banking and AARP Connecticut
March 6, 2008
As Americans take on greater responsibility for their financial security in retirement they must also become more aware of signs of fraud or abusive investment practices. In conjunction with National Consumer Protection Week, AARP Connecticut and the Connecticut Department of Banking have partnered to educate consumers about being informed when it comes to saving and investing their hard-earned money.
“The average American needs to more financially savvy than ever before,” said Brenda Kelley, Director of AARP CT. “This means that whether individuals are shopping for a mortgage, reading their credit card statements, or looking to invest their money they are going to have to develop an eye for unscrupulous practices and take the steps necessary to protect their assets.”
“Being fully informed protects the public,” said Banking Commissioner Howard F. Pitkin. “Consumers and investors should be well educated when it comes to spending or investing their money. Unfortunately, in this day and age we must be more careful than ever to protect our personal information.”
AARP, sponsor of the 10th annual National Consumer Protection Week (NCPW), which takes place March 2-8, encourages people from coast to coast to take action and protect themselves from fraudulent practices. Knowledgeable and diligent consumers are likely to make smarter decisions about managing their money, using credit wisely, and building a solid financial foundation for today and tomorrow.
“Fraud prevention is especially important for 50+ Americans, who control three-quarters of our country’s buying power” said Kelley. “Education is the first line of defense for consumers and we urge folks to take advantage of the resources that NCPW features to help them master the financial facts of life.”
AARP Connecticut and the Connecticut Department of Banking will be working together in 2008, holding educational events around Connecticut aimed at providing older Americans the tools they need to avoid investment scams and fraud.
Potential investors should contact the Banking Department’s Securities and Business Investments Division, by calling (860) 240-8230 or toll-free 1-800-831-7225, with any questions about an investment product, broker or adviser, before making an investment. “One phone call can save a lot of money and heartache,” said Commissioner Pitkin.
For more information, visit the Department of Banking’s Web site at www.ct.gov/dob to learn more about common scams and ways to avoid becoming a victim.
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To help investors avoid fraudulent or unsuitable investments, the AARP Foundation has teamed up with the Investor Protection Trust (IPT) on The Campaign for Wise and Safe Investing. This collaborative outreach has resulted in hundreds of educational seminars around the country and strives to raise national awareness of investment fraud. To learn more about the campaign and ways to avoid investment fraud visit www.aarp.org/investmentfraud. For more information about NCPW, visit www.consumer.gov/ncpw.