August 29, 2013

Medical Alert Phone Scam Active in County

The Office of Consumer Protection (OCP) warns County residents, especially elderly consumers, about a medical alert scam underway across the country, including Montgomery County.

Residents have reported receiving calls from what appears to be a local number. The scammer states that they are calling to schedule a delivery of a life alert system. When the victim tells the caller that they have not ordered the equipment, the scammer tells them that someone purchased it for them.

"When you are not sure of who is calling, the best thing is to just say 'no,'" said OCP Director Eric Friedman. "You should never give out your personal information unless you know the company and have initiated the call."

OCP offers the following advice to consumers of all ages:
  • Do not "press one" on your phone to talk to a live operator.
  • Limit the amount of time you spend on the phone. The longer you speak with the scammers, the more likely they are to get you to reveal personal information.
  • Do not rely on caller ID. Thieves know how to "spoof" telephone numbers making the call appear to be local.
  • If you are unsure, contact OCP at 240-777-3636 or email ConsumerProtection@montgomerycountymd.gov.

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