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Inside Washington (11/22/2011)
  • WASHINGTON (11/23/11)--The financial services industry must learn new ways to work and communicate with seniors, Hubert "Skip" Humphrey, the head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's Office for Older Americans said in an interview with American Banker (Nov. 22). Financial institutions have the capacity to know about and see the patterns of abuse and fraud, Humphrey said. In his first three weeks in office, Humphrey has traveled to San Diego, Los Angeles, Florida and Massachusetts. The former Minnesota attorney general spoke with seniors, local leaders and experts about elder abuse and exploitation, and the need for improved coordination among federal and state agencies, and other nonprofit groups. The CFPC's role is to bring together the numerous public and private organizations that work with seniors to create a coordinated federal presence, Humphrey said. The CFPB has begun work on a study about reverse mortgages and is focusing on issues such as identity theft, online scams and certification requirements for people who hold themselves out as financial experts or advisers …
  • WASHINGTON (11/23/11)--The Office of the Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program (SIGTARP) has shut down online mortgage modification scams that prey on homeowners through Web banners and other Web advertisements on Yahoo! and Bing. Last week, SIGTARP announced it had shut down similar online mortgage modification scams advertised on Google. Among the areas SIGTARP investigates are mortgage modification schemes in which companies charge struggling homeowners a fee in exchange for false promises of lowering their mortgage through TARP's housing program, the Home Affordable Modification Program. In the past week, SIGTARP has shut down 125 of the alleged scams advertised on Yahoo!, Bing, and Google. Microsoft, which founded Bing and whose technology powers Yahoo! Search, has suspended advertising relationships with more than 400 Internet advertisers and agents associated with the schemes and related deceptive advertising and has blocked all future advertising associated with the 125 scams identified by SIGTARP. Google has also suspended advertising relationships with more than 500 Internet advertisers and agents associated with 85 of the alleged online mortgage fraud schemes and related deceptive advertising …


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