Scammers are using a new ruse to swindle personal information from elderly citizens: medical alert systems. A citizen reported that a man posing as a salesman for “Med Alarms” called a few weeks ago and offered a medical alert system. The scammer asked and obtained the victim’s personal information including social security number, bank account information, and other sensitive identifiers. The scammer reportedly told the victim that the equipment would be sent within a week and that their bank account would be charged. Although the victim was genuinely interested in the life safety device, it appears that this was a scam. Calls to the company at 1-855-419-5680, the number given to the victim, have been unsuccessful. The victim has not had a charge made against their account; however, this does not mean they won’t be a victim in the future. Now that the scammer has the victim’s personal and financial information, the thieves have all they need to open credit card accounts and run up charges in the name of the victim. Additionally, the intentions of the ruse may have been to mine the victim’s information in order to offer it for sale to other scammers and further illegal activities. “We want to protect our citizens by encouraging them to not give out their sensitive information,” said Chief Weeks.
TIPS TO PREVENT BEING SCAMMED:
-Don’t give personal information out unless you know the person requesting is genuine
-Verify any calls received by advising the representative you will call them back at the number you have on file.
-Legitimate companies and government agencies would never ask you to purchase a prepaid debit/gift card. Also be suspicious of requests to use money sending services.
-Checks from unknown parties should be cashed or deposited with caution. Many scammers will send a fraudulent check in attempts to get money from their victims.
-Check your credit report annually to ensure no unauthorized credit accounts or inquiries are present by going to: www.annualcreditreport.com
If you are unsure of the legitimacy of a phone call or letter you received, don’t give them your personal or financial information. Please call the DeFuniak Springs Police at 892-8513 or your local law enforcement agency for help.