Senator Reverend Warnock, Aging Committee Colleagues Question Federal Trade Commission Chair About Efforts to Protect Seniors from AI Scams

In 2022, impostor scams were the second most popular racket in America, with over 36,000 reports of people being swindled

Washington, D.C.—Today, U.S. Senator Reverend Raphael Warnock (D-GA), a member of the Senate Special Committee on Aging, joined his fellow committee members to seek answers from Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Chair Lina Khan regarding the FTC’s efforts and strategies to protect older Americans from increasing threats posed by artificial intelligence (AI) related frauds and scams. There has been an increase in cases of scammers utilizing AI to impersonate loved ones to scam people, often the elderly, out of money.

“Combatting frauds and scams has been a longstanding priority for the Committee across annual hearings, the Committee’s fraud hotline, and its fraud book,” the Senators wrote in a letter to the FTC. “You recently noted how ‘generative AI risks turbocharging fraud.’ While AI contains significant promise as an innovative technology, it can also be manipulated by malicious actors targeting vulnerable populations, particularly older Americans.”

In their letter, the Senators posed the following questions for the FTC to respond to:

1.       What is the FTC’s understanding of recent developments in AI-related scams?

2.       What information and data does the FTC have on the prevalence of AI-related scams and accompanying risks?

3.       What steps is the FTC taking or preparing to protect older Americans from AI-related scams?

4.       Is the FTC preparing to update its counter-scam educational and awareness materials, including the “Pass It On” campaign’s materials directly intended for older Americans, to account for the rising risks of AI-related scams? 

In addition to Senator Reverend Warnock, the letter was also signed by Senate Aging Committee Chairman Bob Casey (D-PA), Ranking Member Mike Braun (R-IN), and fellow committee members Senators Tim Scott (R-SC), Marco Rubio (R-FL), Rick Scott (R-FL), J.D. Vance (R-OH), Pete Ricketts (R-NE), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Mark Kelly (D-AZ), and John Fetterman (D-PA). 

Read the full letter here.