Protect yourself against Medicare scams

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Still getting calls from people claiming to be from Medicare, asking for money or personal information? Watch this video about how you can protect yourself from Medicare scams: 

Medicare Scams sound like this

The FTC worked with AARP to create a series of videos about imposter scams – including Medicare scams, IRS imposters and robocalls. While the videos are aimed at older Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, the tips apply to everyone. For the next three Fridays, we’ll highlight these videos.

This week, you’ll learn about these calls that pretend to be from Medicare. The video will help you recognize the scammers who ask for your Medicare number so you can get a back or neck brace. Or who say they need your information or money so you can get a new Medicare card. And you’ll hear from an FTC expert about how to avoid these scams:

  • Hang up. If someone calls claiming to be from Medicare, asking for your Social Security number or bank information to get your new card or new benefits, that’s a scam.
  • Don’t give personal information to a caller claiming to be from Medicare. You can’t trust caller id. These calls can be spoofed so they look like they’re coming from Medicare even when they’re not. Before you give any personal information, initiate your own call to Medicare at 1-800-MEDICARE.
  • Report the call. Report Medicare imposters at 1-800-MEDICARE and ftc.gov/complaint. The more we hear from you, the more we can help fight scams.

For more information about stopping imposter scams, visit ftc.gov/imposters. And to learn about how to stop unwanted calls, including using call blocking technology, go to ftc.gov/calls.

Comments

I can’t say I’m smarter than others, but I can immediately identify a scam. If Medicare calls they should already have your SS number. Or even your Medicare provider. Anyone asking me for personal information is “phishing” but they won’t get any bites from me.

They don't day they're from Medicare. They're saying they're from Orthopedic Medical about my 'back pain' . I tell them I'm fine and don't work w/ strangers over the phone

Us, too!

Same with my elderly parents. Have told them point blank (I've heard them) that no, they DON'T want any free medical equipment, but it was still sent. 3 times from 3 different companies! Medicare and BCBS has paid over $3,000 for this junk. We have had to take the time to send the crap back in one case, but in the others, we were told by the 'companies' that they would send a return label for us to us to return without having to pay for shipping. Still waiting for those labels. Cannot believe that these companies with their street addresses cannot be held accountable for these rip-offs to the tax payers and insurance providers (losses trickle down to customers) creating high insurance costs. They need to be STOPPED now!

Similar to Julcion, I'm getting dozens of calls a week from different numbers saying (robocall) they're "responding to my inquiry about medical braces (I don't need such a thing)." Weird, it's been hot like this for the last few weeks. My "dumb" phone can't directly block these, but I have a little system (sometimes they call multiple times from the same #) - I generate a contact with a special ring tone (can hold multiple phone numbers), that way I know it's the idiots calling again - I pick up and hang up immediately, just in the hope that they pay something per connect.

I often get calls regarding Medicare Coverage. I usually start by asking "are you with Medicare". Many times they will speak over me without answering, so I continue to repeat "Are you with Medicare". Most times they hang up.

Received a voice mail stating they had tried to contact me by snail mail, not true. Did not answer the phone deleted the message and blocked the number.

I get several calls a day from a scammer calling like they are representing Medicare. They start to say my Medicare is going to be cut off. I just hang up the phone. Thank you as always for your concerns and helping to stop these scammers.

Medicare call professionally asking that their database needs to be updated with current information and to confirm accuracy of information they have which includes full name, address, and of course phone number then they want to look at your Medicare card to insure that it is correct by telling them all the numbers on it.
O course they hung up after I claimed that I couldn't find the card.

I have received all kinds of offers claiming that Medicare covers back pain materials pain medicine and everything these people are getting annoying

Just received a message telling me my MacOS on my laptop was infected with malicious spyware. I checked the phone number with my iPhone and want to thank you for your good advice.

Been getting calls from someone saying they are calling from Medicare Benefits Dept. They want to know if I have received my new card. I ask them if they know about CMS? They all have foreign accent and they say they don’t know CMS. I tell them they are a scam and not to call me again and hang up.

I get these calls very often. The ones that say they have a shipment ready to deliver asking, "Will I be home tomorrow to sign for it when it arrives?" we should ask, "Where is the delivery coming from?", " What is the doctor's name...and spell it out slowly so I can write it down?" and, "What is the doctor's address?" Try to get as much information as you can from the caller. Then refuse the shipment. This information is important, and it also wastes the caller's time to keep him/her from calling others. Then contact Medicare from their official number printed on their Summary Notices, and report what you have learned. You may also contact ftc.gov to report the information as identity theft. I once actually received a box of "orthotic braces" that I did not order. I called the shipper and received a "Return Shipping Label" weeks later, then sent it back. Meanwhile, I called Medicare to report a fraud. I was told that when I received the Medicare Summary with the fraudulent claims on it (months later), to circle the wrongful claims, make a copy of the form and return it with an Appeal (info on the back of the Summary) with a letter refusing the claim as "possibly fraudulent" and relating my experience. We need to fight back.

I got a priorty envelope in side it contained a company called secret customer and the email and xheck for $1,850.50

Multiple calls about Medicare Plus card. What is this? Another scam I think. Phone numbers are never the same either and are not the regular Medicare number. They also keep talking about open enrollment which as far as I'm aware ended in Dec.!

I've been getting robocalls from "Medicare" every day. I know its a scam because I'm years away from qualifying for Medicare. The incoming number changes each time, so I can't block the call. Because of my job and volunteer work, I get legitimate calls from numbers I don't always know, so I can't just hang up. So, I have to let most of those calls go to voicemail now.

Received a voice message on phone because was not home at the time saying that my computer was sending out illegal messages and that it was a federal offense and if I did not call them to correct this that a federal warrant would be issued and that I would be arrested within two days. Blocked phone number and reported their 800 number to the federal trade commission.

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