By Roy Whited
This information was taken in part from a recent newsletter from the Ohio Department of Insurance. Columbus- Ohio Lieutenant Governor and Insurance Director Mary Taylor have issued a consumer alert after reports have surfaced that telephone con artists are using the confusion surrounding the Affordable Care Act (ACA) to attempt to steal Ohioans personal information. The scammers are claiming to be representatives of a health insurance exchange, Medicare, or a “government program”.
Taylor said, “ No one from an official government program should be calling you requesting personal information. If you are contacted by a suspicious caller, do not provide your personal information, including your Medicare, Social Security and bank account numbers.”
- Claiming to be authorized to help people navigate the health insurance exchange created under ACA and they need to verify the person’s name, address, and social security number.
- Claiming to be a Medicare representative and that because of the ACA the person’s information needs to be verified in order to receive a new Medicare card.
- Claiming they need the person’s Medicare number to provide them an updated medical emergency alert device. One of the brand names mentioned is Lifeline.
Avoid Becoming a Victim:
- Medicare or government program representatives do not make house calls or solicit by telephone.
- Protect your personal information. Do not give out your Medicare, Social Security, or bank account numbers.
Contact the Ohio Department of Insurance:
- If you are contacted by a suspicious caller seeking your personal information, call the Department’s fraud hotline at 1-800-686-1527. You can also report it at www.insurance.ohio.gov
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