Avoid COVID-19 Scams

Have you gotten robocalls, text messages, or emails offering free face masks? Or maybe you’ve seen social media posts about free COVID-19 testing kits, “cures,” or protective equipment?

Unfortunately, scammers are using the COVID-19 pandemic to try to steal your Medicare Number and personal information. If anyone reaches out to get your Medicare Number or personal information in exchange for something, you can bet it’s a scam.

Stay alert for fraud during the coronavirus national emergency. Con artists like to take advantage of people when they’re distracted. Con artists may try to get your Medicare Number or personal information so they can steal your identity and commit Medicare fraud. Medicare fraud results in higher health care costs and taxes for everyone.

Protect yourself from Medicare fraud. Guard your Medicare card like it’s a
credit card. Remember:

•Medicare will never contact you for your Medicare Number or other personal information unless you’ve given them permission in advance.

•Medicare will never call you to sell you anything.

•You may get calls from people promising you things if you give them a Medicare Number. Don’t do it.

•Medicare will never visit you at your home.

•Medicare can’t enroll you over the phone unless you called first.
Report anything suspicious to Medicare. If you suspect fraud, call

The information was supplied by Medicare to us and “all interested parties”.

Harry P. Thal, MA, is a licensed insurance broker in California (0621106) and 24 other states. His offices are in Kernville.He is a member of the Society of Certified Senior Advisors and Past-President of the Kern Association of Health Underwriters. He may be reached at 760-376-2100, e-mail harrythal@aol.com or visit him on the web at www.harrythal.com.