FTC Announces Agenda, Panelists for Upcoming Senior ID Theft Workshop

For Release

Consumer advocates, government officials and representatives of private industry will take part in the May 7 Federal Trade Commission workshop titled “Senior Identity Theft: A Problem in this Day and Age.” The workshop will take place during Older Americans Month and address areas of identity theft that have a significant effect on seniors.

The workshop will be free and open to the public. It will be held at the FTC Conference Center at 601 New Jersey Avenue, N.W. in Washington, D.C.
           
FTC Chairwoman Edith Ramirez will provide opening remarks at the workshop. Among the topic areas to be discussed are tax and government benefits identity theft, medical identity theft, and identity theft in long-term care. Participants also will address the most effective ways to reach older Americans with information on how to prevent and respond to identity theft.

The tentative agenda is included below. Any updates, along with logistical information for those planning to attend, can be found on the workshop's website.

9:00     Welcoming Remarks
Chairwoman Edith Ramirez, Federal Trade Commission
9:15     Panel 1: Tax & Government Benefits Identity Theft
This panel will explore tax and benefits identity theft among older Americans. Senior citizens are particularly vulnerable to this crime because their personal information may be easily accessible by numerous individuals. Panelists will examine the scope of the problem; what caregivers and support professionals can do to prevent it; and steps to remedy it. Finally, the panelists will discuss the unique identity theft challenges to seniors as the government moves to deliver benefits through prepaid, reloadable debit cards.
Moderator: Steven Toporoff, Federal Trade Commission
Panelists:          Amber Smith, Internal Revenue Service, Office of Privacy and Information Protection
Christopher Lee, Internal Revenue Service, Taxpayer Advocate Service
David Lindner, Social Security Administration, Office of Privacy and Disclosure
Susan Morgenstern, Legal Aid Society of Cleveland
Robert Kerr, National Association of Enrolled Agents (NAEA)
John Morton, Green Dot Corporation
10:45   Break
11:00   Panel 2: Medical Identity Theft
Panelists from the government, the private sector, and advocacy groups will discuss seniors’ vulnerability to identity theft in the health care arena. The panelists also will consider the impact of new laws related to the issue, as well as best practices for seniors and their advocates to detect, prevent, and remedy medical identity theft.
Moderator:   Megan Cox, Federal Trade Commission
Panelists:   Pam Dixon, World Privacy Forum
Andy McKee, Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General
Rick Kam, ID Experts
Robin M. Slade, Medical Identity Fraud Alliance
12:15   Lunch – on your own
1:30     Panel 3: Identity Theft in Long-term Care
This panel will explore senior identity theft in the long-term care context, including nursing homes, assisted living, and in-home care. Senior citizens in long-term care are at risk of identity theft because their personal information is readily accessible by numerous individuals. Panelists will examine the scope of the problem; what caregivers and support professionals can do to prevent identity theft in long-term care; the challenges of assisting seniors with diminished capacity; steps to remedy identity theft; and possible solutions.
Moderator: Lisa Weintraub Schifferle, Federal Trade Commission   
Panelists:  Lori Stiegel, ABA Commission on Law and Aging
Becky Kurtz, Department of Health and Human Services, Long-term Care Ombudsman Programs
Naomi Karp, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, Office for Older Americans
Neal Walters, AARP
Sarah Wells, Consumer Voice
2:45     Break
3:00     Panel 4: Reaching Older Consumers
This panel will discuss how to reach consumers ages 65 and older with educational messages. As a massive and growing demographic, older consumers are frequent targets of marketers and educators alike. But how can consumer advocates find this audience, get our messages in front of them, and convince them to listen – and even act? Are approaches different for different segments of the older population? What about when older consumers aren’t actively seeking the information – and might not really want it? Panelists will share experiences and ideas about best practices to reach older consumers with educational messages. Audience participation is encouraged.
Moderator: Jennifer Leach, Federal Trade Commission
Panelists:  Elinor Ginzler, Jewish Council for the Aging of Greater Washington, Center for Supportive Services
Teresa A. Keenan, Ph.D., AARP
Aaron Tax, Services and Advocacy for GLBT Elders (SAGE) and The Diverse Elders Coalition
Andrew Tuck, Ph.D., Applied Research & Consulting
Erin Van der Bellen, WUSA-9
4:15     Concluding Remarks
Charles A. Harwood, Acting Director, Bureau of Consumer Protection, Federal Trade Commission
4:30     Adjourn

The Federal Trade Commission works for consumers to prevent fraudulent, deceptive, and unfair business practices and to provide information to help spot, stop, and avoid them. To file a complaint in English or Spanish, visit the FTC's online Complaint Assistant or call 1-877-FTC-HELP (1-877-382-4357). The FTC enters complaints into Consumer Sentinel, a secure, online database available to more than 2,000 civil and criminal law enforcement agencies in the U.S. and abroad. The FTC’s website provides free information on a variety of consumer topics.  Like the FTC on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, and subscribe to press releases for the latest FTC news and resources.

Contact Information

MEDIA CONTACT:
Jay Mayfield
Office of Public Affairs

202-326-2181
STAFF CONTACT:
Steve Toporoff,
Bureau of Consumer Protection
202-326-3135

Lisa Schifferle,
Bureau of Consumer Protection
202-326-3377

Megan Cox,
Bureau of Consumer Protection
202-326-2282