Scam targets Medicare and insurance patients

A new scam uses the Affordable Care Act as a ploy to get a victim’s banking account information.

A caller claiming to be a government or Medicare employee tells victims they will receive a new national medical card or a new Medicare card. The caller claims the card is being issued to comply with the Affordable Care Act, which is not true. The scammer will ask for bank routing numbers and account numbers and claim these are needed to issue the card.

The scam has been reported to Colorado’s Senior Medicare Patrol and the Federal Trade Commission. Medicare beneficiaries and others have been targeted. So far, none of the people who have reported the scam have given a caller bank account information, Senior Medicare Patrol Program Director Alice Ierley said.

“We need to alert people to this so that they keep up their guard. We expect similar scams to pop up as the 2014 implementation date for healthcare reform approaches,” Ierley said.

The Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies recommends hanging up on such callers. People should not provide personal information such as a Social Security number, driver’s license number or banking information over the phone, particularly when the caller is not a trusted source.

The caller involved in this scam often calls from a Texas area code, most often from 402.

Anyone who receives a scam call can report it to the Federal Trade Commission at 1-877-FTC-HELP or http://www.ftccomplaintassistant.gov. Medicare beneficiaries can report to the Colorado Senior Medicare Patrol hotline at 1-800-503-5190.


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