What Do I Do If I Receive A Medicare Scam Call
If you receive a Medicare scam call, hang up.
Speaking to the Medicare phone scammers, even to tell them off, can encourage more scammers to call your number. If calls persist, consider discussing certain scam blocking features with your phone company.
After receiving a Medicare scam phone call that asks for your Medicare number or other personal information, reach out to 1-800-MEDICARE â TTY:â¯1-877-486-2048.
If you have already discussed personal information on the phone that you now believe is in the wrong hands, contact the Federal Trade Commission to protect yourself from the damages of identity theft.
Reporting Medicare Fraud & Abuse
Medicare fraud and abuse can happen anywhere, and usually results in higher health care costs and taxes for everyone. Some examples include:
- A provider that bills Medicare for services or supplies they never gave you, like charging you for a visit you never had, or a back brace you never got.
- A provider that charges Medicare twice for a service or item that you only got once.
- A person who steals your Medicare number or card and uses it to submit fraudulent claims in your name.
- A company that offers you a Medicare drug plan that Medicare hasnt approved.
Reporting A Medicare Scam
If someone has tried to scam you or if you have been scammed, use the phone numbers below to report the incident.
- Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services: 1-800-MEDICARE
- South Dakota Attorney General: 1-800-300-1986
- Social Security Administration: 800-772-1213
- Iowa Senior Medicare Patrol: 800-351-4664
- Nebraska Senior Health Insurance Information Program : 800-234-7119
For information, you can visit the Medicare website.
If patients report any form of Medicare scam to you, kindly remind them:
- Sioux Center Health or insurance representatives do not make unsolicited calls asking for your Medicare ID number, bank or credit card details, Social Security number, or other personal information.
- The Social Security Administration and Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services do not call customers to update their information. They will never ask for your financial information.
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Always Check Your Account
For many of us, frequent checking of our finances is easy via apps and online banking but for some of us, it isnt that simple. It is always wise to check your account that youve made the transaction with immediately after the call, to confirm theyve taken the correct and agreed amount.
If nothing has been taken, or too much has been taken this could be evidence of a fraudster. Contact your credit card supplier immediately.
How To Sign Up For Medicare Supplement Plans
If you are looking to supplement your Original Medicare to get full health insurance benefits, work with a trusted company like us. We only partner with the safest and most secure companies in the industry and can pair you with a Medicare Advantage plan, Medicare Part D, or Medicare supplement coverage that works best for you during your enrollment period.
Our licensed insurance agents have the time and knowledge to ensure you make a great decision for both your benefits and finances. So give us a call today. Or simply fill out our online rate form to receive the best rates in your area.
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A Few Key Details To Know
Before diving into the specific scams, however, there are some over-arching pieces of information that, once understood, can greatly reduce the chances that you or a loved one will fall victim to such a scam.
First and foremost, Social Security scammers are after a few pieces of highly important information, including:
- Your birth date.
- Either your entire credit card number, or the last eight digits of the number.
- Your bank account numbers.
These are the standard pieces of information that the SSA and any other financial institution use to verify that you are who you say you are.
Under no circumstances should you give any of this information out — over the phone, via email, or on a website — before first validating that the person you’re speaking with is legitimate. This point is doubly true if those asking for this information contacted you first.
In any case regarding Social Security or Medicare, there’s absolutely no penalty for refusing to give this information before first verifying that the people you’re talking to are who they say they are. By far, the easiest way to check and see is to call the SSA’s nationwide office at 772-1213, or, better yet, visiting this website to get the location the nearest SSA office in your region and visiting it in person.
And when it comes to Medicare, the same rules apply. If you have any doubt about someone who calls on behalf of Medicare, hang up and dial MEDICARE .
What Should I Do If Something Isnt Right
If you suspect you might have been, or will be, a victim of a fraudster the best thing to do is to contact your credit card supplier and tell them your concerns. Credit card companies have many ways to fight against fraud, especially if theyre ready for it.
They can review transactions and contact you immediately after one has been made, they can freeze or cancel your card or they can refuse the next transaction until theyve confirmed it with you, to assess fraud.
If you have taken any of the callers details, it will help the credit card company going forward. If they do turn out to be fraudulent, the credit card company can stop other people being victims of the same scam.
If the call was in your area and you suspect fraud, contact local law enforcement with the details. They may be able to put an investigative team on it . Remember, your consumer rights are exactly the same, whether purchases were made in person, online or over the phone.
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Medicare Scam Phone Calls That Seniors Should Avoid
While we choose to believe in the good in people, itâs always best to be cautious just in case. Seniors receiving Medicare are commonly targeted by scammers who are on the hunt to steal identities, money, or more. Medicare scam phone calls specifically ramp up during Medicare Open Enrollment, which takes place annually, October 15 â December 7.
As we approach this important time, it is vital that you are aware of what Medicare scam phone calls are out there and what to do if you receive them, so that you can better protect yourself and your loved ones.
Are You Automatically Covered By Medicare At Age 65
Yes. If you are receiving benefits, the Social Security Administration will automatically sign you up at age 65 for parts A and B of Medicare. … Social Security will send you sign-up instructions at the beginning of your initial enrollment period, three months before the month of your 65th birthday.
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How To Prepare For A Call To Medicare
When you call the Medicare hotline, you will first be directed to an automated system. The automated system will give you some options and will collect information about your request.
If you would like to speak to a Medicare agent, a person is always available, though you may have to wait on hold. Make sure to call when youre in a comfortable position, and at a time when youre able to wait on the phone for a while if you need to.
Have these items or information handy when you call Medicare:
Attempts To Get You To Enter Sensitive Data Through A Website Link
With a little bit of effort, it’s very easy to make a fraudulent website appear legitimate. Sleek layouts, official logos, and well-written content are usually enough to convince the average person that a site is legitimate.
Unfortunately, all of that is easy to fake.
As we discussed, you should never click on a link that you receive from a suspicious email address. Even if you do, checking to be sure that the URL ends in “.gov” or “.gov/” is critical. Only legitimate government organizations can end their Internet address in “.gov” or have “.gov/” at the end. But remember: if “.gov” is followed by anything but a backslash, it’s likely to be a scam site.
If you still aren’t sure whether a website is legitimate, there’s a third workaround to check the validity: Simply cut and paste the address into a Google search and see what pops up. Often, people will have already posted about questionable or fraudulent people trying to contact them. Reading through these posts should give you a better idea as to whether you’re dealing with fraud.
While this method can be an easy way to identify fraudulent websites, it is not a reliable way to guarantee the site is safe. In other words, if you paste the URL into a search and no suspicious evidence is found, that alone is not enough to guarantee that a site is safe.
If you’d like to report fraudulent websites, you can visit USA.gov’s scam site here.
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Does Medicare Call Your Home
Spammers found a niche in claiming to be Medicare, so if you get a call from a person saying theyre with Medicare, you can guarantee its spam. You may also find that youll start getting spammy emails in your inbox if it sounds suspicious, it more than likely is! Please do not reply to any emails seeking personal information, and be sure to report it as spam immediately. You should never share your Medicare Identifier or Social Security number with a stranger.
If you get calls from someone claiming to be Medicare, get a name and phone number, and call Medicare to make a report.
Should You Carry Your Medicare Card When You Travel
Keep your Medicare card with you so it’s handy and secure in case you need it. Also, leave a copy of your health care insurance with a loved one so they can send it to you if you lose yours. You should also have your doctor’s contact information on you in case any questions or concerns arise while you’re traveling.
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Hard Facts About Medicare
Here are some important things for seniors to know about how Medicare and the Social Security Administration function.
- Medicare generally wont call you, except in limited circumstances. One such exception is if you have called 1-800-MEDICARE and requested a return call.
- Medicare will never call or come to your home uninvited to sell products or services.
- SSA representatives may call Medicare beneficiaries if they need more information to process applications for Social Security benefits or enrollment in certain Medicare Plans, but, again, this is rare.
- If a phone call is needed, youll receive an official letter from the SSA to arrange a telephone interview.
- Medicare cards do not expire, so be wary of someone saying they need to send you a new one.
- If your card is lost or destroyed, contact the SSA directly to request a replacement. If you think someone else is fraudulently using your Medicare card, then call Medicare directly at 1-800-MEDICARE .
Does Medicare Call You At Home
When enrolling in Medicare, you should be aware that neither Social Security nor Medicare calls you to get information. Should any issue arise in which Medicare or Social Security needs any information from you, theyll ALWAYS send you a letter to notify you. If youre getting too many spam phone calls, you might want to get on the Federal Trade Commissions Do Not Call list. Medicare beneficiaries are likely to receive phone calls once they become eligible for Medicare
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Find the most affordable Medicare Plan in your area
You can get back to enjoying your day in peace after following any of the ways to put an end to spam calls or most of them anyway. You must be looking for a way to get on the Medicare Do Not Call list. Beneficiaries often see an influx in spam calls when becoming eligible for benefits.
There is light at the end of the tunnel you can register your number with the Federal Trade Commission. Below we can teach you how to join the Do Not Call list. Further, we discuss how to know when Medicare is calling you, and when its a scam.
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Social Security Medicare And Phone Calls
Its essential to know that Medicare providers will never call you for information. Theyll send you a letter if they need information from you.
If you receive a phone call stating theyre either of those two, hang up and call the associated office directly unless you requested a call.
Let them know someone called you stating they were with Medicare. Medicare can look up your records to verify and see the reason for the call.
Guard Your Personal Information
Solicitations from Medicare scammers can seem very realistic and tend to pick up during open enrollment, which runs from October 15 through December 7. Scams can happen at any time of year though, so seniors need to be vigilant.
Scammers may try to make contact in a variety of ways including telephone, email, postal mail, text messages, leaflets and fliers. Generally, they’re looking to steal personal information such as your Medicare number, which can be used to file bogus Medicare claims. Often the senior has no idea these claims are happening, said Richard Scheff, a partner in the litigation practice group at global law firm Armstrong Teasdale.
Don’t respond to solicitations from companies you don’t recognize or click on links or respond to emails from people you don’t know. And if you get a phone call from someone claiming to be from Medicare, hang up immediately, even if the phone number on the CallerID screen seems like it could be credible. Scammers can use a fake CallerID name to impersonate Medicare or another known organization, according to a consumer warning from the Federal Trade Commission. Seniors should know that no one from Medicare will call or text them unsolicited to ask for money or to help with enrollment or some other service.
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An Ssa Employee Or Robo
Email isn’t the only way scammers will try to gain access to your Social Security information. Because the elderly are the primary users of the program, and because the elderly are less likely to be tech-savvy and using email on a regular basis, phone calls are another scamming medium.
Many times, the content of such phone calls is similar. You’re supposed to get additional funds, or you need to verify that you want to receive your COLA increases, or your assets are being frozen for “suspicious activity.” The person making the call will often refer to him- or herself as an “SSA employee” or someone calling from “SSA headquarters.”
Sometimes, these calls are made by actual human beings looking to gather information. But often, they come in the form of a robocall, a recording made by the perpetrators to get you to reveal sensitive information.
Whenever you or someone you love receives a phone call that meets any of these descriptions, the best thing to do is simple:
- Immediately hang up: There’s little downside to doing this. The real SSA will never ask for permission to increase your COLA amounts, or penalize you for hanging up.
- Dial the SSA’s confirmed phone number. As a reminder, that’s 772-1213.
What To Do If You’ve Been Scammed
If you believe you’ve received a fraudulent call regarding new Medicare cards, you should immediately call MEDICARE .
If you’ve given away this sensitive SSA information, follow these steps:
It’s also worth thinking about putting a freeze on your credit, as well as contacting your banks and credit card companies — as these numbers can also be used as identification to take money from your personal accounts.
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What You Should Know To Avoid Covid
Scammers are rapidly altering their tactics and adapting their schemes to target the COVID-19 vaccine to prey on unsuspecting beneficiaries. Be vigilant and protect yourself from potential fraud concerning COVID-19 vaccines and treatments. Heres what you need to know about the COVID-19 vaccine:
- You will not pay anything out of pocket to get the vaccine during this public health emergency.
- You cant pay to put your name on a list to get the vaccine.
- You cant pay to get early access to the vaccine.
- Nobody legit will call you about the vaccine and ask for your Social Security, bank account, or credit card number. Thats a scam.
- No one from Medicare, the health department, a vaccine distribution center or a health insurance company will contact you to ask for your Social Security number, your credit card or bank account information to sign you up to get the vaccine.
Medicare Scams Are On The Rise Here Are Four Tips To Avoid Them
Scammers often use deceptive tactics to lure unsuspecting seniors into sharing their Medicare number. They might offer to send free medical supplies or genetic testing kits, or promote some other type of refund or incentive.
These types of health-care fraud schemes, which cost the U.S. government tens of billions of dollars in annual losses, are especially troubling because they prey on older people who tend to be more vulnerable to exploitation.
Here are four protective measures seniors and families should take:
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