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'Obamascare Scammers' threaten elderly with jail

By William M. Schmalfeldt     Oct 7, 2013 in Crime
Concord - Just when you thought identity thieves and telemarketer scammers who target the elderly were the lowest form of sub-human scum, a new species is discovered.
This group of scammers, according to authorities in New Hampshire, is preying on the trusting nature and lack of sophistication of some of the Granite State's older folks, threatening them with arrest and jail time. Saying they are working for "Obamacare," these scammers tell their potential victims that unless they pony up some specific personal information, such as bank account numbers, social security numbers, and other things that identity thieves can use to drain your bank account.
According to a story on the Public News Service website Monday morning:
Bob Denz is a retired FBI agent who now volunteers as a fraud fighter with AARP New Hampshire. He said scammers know many consumers are confused about all of their options under the Affordable Care Act, and they are also fearful about meeting its deadlines. He said local consumers should hang up right away if they get a phone call like this.
"The caller poses as a government official, uses scare tactics to get personal data and hints that you might go to jail," Denz said. "That kind of scares people, particularly those who are up in age."
You will never get any call from the government about the Affordable Care Act unless you have requested more information about it, he added. So if you get a call like that, the person at the other end of the line is likely trying to get you to part with your hard-earned money, he warned.
AARP reminds folks "of a certain age" to be extremely cautious when dealing with strangers on the phone.
"You're not going to recognize a scam unless you are looking for a scam, so look for a scam. And don't be rushed. There's time to do research and ask questions. AARP is one of the sources of pointing people in the right direction - where to turn for good, solid, honest information." If the government is going to contact you, he added, they usually use the trusty old U.S. Mail, so if you get an email, text or phone call, be suspicious.
More about Affordable Care Act, Scams, Aarp
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