| MEDICAL CARD SCAM ON THE RISE
Attorney General Ellen F. Rosenblum reminds Oregon consumers never to share their personal or financial information with anyone by email or over the phone. The Oregon Department of Justice has seen a recent influx in reports from senior citizens who received unsolicited telephone calls regarding updates to their medical cards. The scam artist behind these calls will then ask for the consumer’s bank account and/or routing number in order to process the update.
These types of unsolicited phone calls and emails are “phishing” scams. The crooks behind them may already have some personal information about their victims (name, address, etc.), and they may claim to represent a familiar organization or government program. Oregon consumers should be aware that these are NOT legitimate phone calls.
The Department of Justice reminds Oregonians to follow some basic guidelines to avoid falling prey to phishing scams:
- NEVER respond to an email from someone seeking your personal information. No matter how authentic it may look or sound, consumers should promptly hit “delete.”
- Do not click on links embedded in an email from someone you don’t know. These links may contain viruses or malware designed to steal your personal information.
- NEVER engage a phone call from someone seeking your personal information. Legitimate groups you’re affiliated with – insurance companies, banks and government programs like Medicare and Social Security – already have that information and will never ask you to provide it via email or unsolicited phone call.
- Don’t answer the phone if the number is unavailable, originates from an unknown or private party or if you otherwise do not recognize the phone number. If the call is important, they’ll leave a message.
The Oregon Department of Justice is committed to protecting the marketplace from fraud and scams. If you or someone you know has fallen victim and given out personal financial information call the Attorney General’s Consumer Hotline for help at 1-877-877-9392 or file a complaint online.
Oregonians can protect themselves from receiving solicitation calls by registering both landline and mobile telephone numbers on the National “Do Not Call” Registry. Consumers may call toll-free at 1-888-382-1222 or sign up online at https://www.donotcall.gov. Registration is free.
Information about Identity Theft can be accessed on the Department’s website at: http://www.doj.state.or.us/consumer/id_theft.shtml.