Medical Coverage and Benefits
Coronavirus Medical Coverage Scam: How it Works
Many people are bombarded these days with phone calls claiming to be from local medical centers, in regards to the recent scary spread of the COVID-19. This heartless act comes right after the Coronavirus Face Mask Scam that hit on last week. How does it work? Crooks call using automated services, pretend to confirm the continuation of the “annual coverage” of the recipients and ask them to make a payment that didn’t go through the previous time. Alternatively, the callers let the victims know about a new mandatory prescription that they need to get.
In all cases, criminals exploit the health concerns of the victims and ask for confirmation of their Medicare number and their credit card details. As expected, most of the people who fall for this scam are the elderly, who are scared about their well-being, especially since the COVID-19 is deadly amongst people over 70 if not treated immediately.
The World Health Organization recently released a video explaining what people need to do to protect themselves from getting the Coronavirus. Watch it below:
Now let’s get back to the Medicare Benefits Scam. In a different variation of it, victims receive calls from a fake representative of “AD Medical Advisors” who tries to sell them a prescription drug discount plan or advises them of a problem with their Medicare program. The crook then asks for the bank account number and withdraws $300.
In the third variation of the medical coverage scam, criminals call seniors claiming to be government officials. They seek personal information in order to process government benefits and use the enactment of the Affordable Care Act to collect names, addresses and bank account numbers from unsuspecting victims.
The above-mentioned scam occurs usually when there’s a significant change in government policy, or when a relevant topic to this subject is featured in the news. Then it’s easy for scammers to use people’s uncertainty and try to get them to reveal personal information.
In this particular case, the scammer claims the government is preparing to issue national medical cards under the Affordable Care Act and asks the victims for verification of their personal information.
Medical Coverage Scam: How To Avoid
Warn your parents and grandparents of this in advance and advise them to tell the callers they’ll call them back. That way they can ring off straight away. Also, don’t forget to register your or their phone number with the Do Not Call Registry List (in the US HERE and Australia HERE), Telephone Preference Service (TPS in the U.K. – here) and DNCL (Do Not Call Line in Canada).
On the other hand, watch the video below to see the 8 most common scams against seniors, exposed:
How to Report the Medical Coverage Scam:
Make your family and friends aware of the Medical Benefits scam by sharing it on social media using the buttons provided. You can also officially report the scammers to the Federal Trade Commission using the link below:
How to Protect Yourself More:
If you want to be the first to find out the most notorious scams every week, feel free to subscribe to the Scam Detector newsletter here. You’ll receive periodical emails and we promise not to spam. Last but not least, use the Comments section below to expose other scammers.