Watch out for these Obamacare scams - New York News

Watch out for these Obamacare scams

Updated:
By David Goehring, "CarbonNYC" via flickr. Some scammers are using confusion about the implementation of Obamacare to con people out of their money and steal their identities. By David Goehring, "CarbonNYC" via flickr. Some scammers are using confusion about the implementation of Obamacare to con people out of their money and steal their identities.

By: Michael De Groote, Deseret News

As the Obamacare's health insurance exchanges become open, it seems that scam artists are also anxious to con folks out of their money. With so much confusion going on during the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, including the government shutdown, people may be easy targets unless they are careful.

No cards

Richard Eisenberg at Forbes says one of the biggest scams is the "nonexistent Obamacare card."

There is no card. People don't need a card. People don't need a new Medicare card.

"As you might expect," Eisenberg writes, "con artists pitching the cards say they need to get your personal information, such as your Social Security number or bank account, before they can send one."

No calls

Watch out for phony phone calls from scammers claiming to be government employees. The North Hills Patch gives advice from Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen Kane on this: "Be wary of illusory government and company names claiming to help with enrollment, especially if they list a toll-free number other than that of the official help center. Enrollment is simply an option available to consumers, who will not be contacted by state or federal government in person or by phone, email or text."

Nobody is going to call you. Legitimate representatives won't call people out of the blue.

Insurance "agents"

Kimberly Lankford at Kiplinger warns about misleading insurance sales. Some people on Medicare have received calls from "insurance agents," Lankford writes, "telling them that they're going to lose their Medicare benefits or access to their doctors because of Obamacare and that they should sign up for a Medicare Advantage plan instead. They either steal the person's premiums entirely or get a commission from the sale."

Fake websites

Lankford also says to be on the lookout for fake websites. "Crooks are also sending e-mails and setting up Web sites that look like they're from an official state exchange," she writes, "often with very similar names and an official-looking seal. Don't click on the site or the e-mail; instead, find a link to the state exchange at Healthcare.gov."

Fake helpers

Michael Kling at the financial blog Wise Bread says scammers are calling people and offering to help people access the health insurance exchanges in exchange for a fee. "Beware," Kling writes. "They're out to collect bogus fees. They also collect bank account numbers or other sensitive financial information. … Official helpers, called navigators, assisters, or counselors, can help you with the health insurance marketplace. But they don't charge fees or push particular plans. To find people who can help you understand your health coverage options and enroll in a plan, visit the government's local help site."

To find legitimate help, people can simply go to Healthcare.gov or call toll free at (800) 318-2596.

If people are solicited by a suspected scammer, they can call the Federal Trade Commission's complaint line at 877-FTC-HELP.

EMAIL: mdegroote@deseretnews.com

Twitter: @degroote

Facebook: facebook.com/madegroote


Original Post

Copyright 2013 Deseret Digital Media, Inc.

  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Temperature drops; snow moves in

    Temperature drops; snow moves in

    Tuesday, April 15 2014 10:59 PM EDT2014-04-16 02:59:53 GMT
    Fox 5 photoFox 5 photo
    The mild weather made an exit in the Tristate region and snow moved in late Tuesday into Wednesday. Scattered showers, heavier rain, thunderstorms, and strong winds were expected. Reports of heavy, wet snow have come in from the Hudson Valley, northern New Jersey and New York City. The snow is not expected to accumulate for very long.
    The mild weather made an exit in the Tristate region and snow moved in late Tuesday into Wednesday. Scattered showers, heavier rain, thunderstorms, and strong winds were expected. Reports of heavy, wet snow have come in from the Hudson Valley, northern New Jersey and New York City. The snow is not expected to accumulate for very long.
  • Robert De Niro says Tribeca Film Festival is his passion

    Robert De Niro says Tribeca Film Festival is his passion

    Tuesday, April 15 2014 10:47 PM EDT2014-04-16 02:47:46 GMT
    Robert De Niro is a family man, a filmmaker, an entrepreneur and one of my favorite actors of all time. He's also a co-founder of the Tribeca Film Festival, which has more to see than ever before. De Niro wears just as many hats on screen as he does in real life. The father of six starred in six films last year, owns four restaurants and a hotel, and still finds time each spring for the Tribeca Film Festival, Lower Manhattan's annual cinematic showcase.
    Robert De Niro is a family man, a filmmaker, an entrepreneur and one of my favorite actors of all time. He's also a co-founder of the Tribeca Film Festival, which has more to see than ever before. De Niro wears just as many hats on screen as he does in real life. The father of six starred in six films last year, owns four restaurants and a hotel, and still finds time each spring for the Tribeca Film Festival, Lower Manhattan's annual cinematic showcase.
  • Obama congratulates UConn on NCAA dominance

    Obama congratulates UConn on NCAA dominance

    Tuesday, April 15 2014 9:47 PM EDT2014-04-16 01:47:07 GMT
    President Barack Obama has congratulated the University of Connecticut's men's and women's basketball teams on winning last week's NCAA tournaments. The White House says Obama commended men's head coach Kevin Ollie and his team on their decisive championship victory and noted how he enjoyed watching them throughout the tournament. He told women's head coach Geno Auriemma how impressive it was to see the team continue to dominate women's collegiate basketball.
    President Barack Obama has congratulated the University of Connecticut's men's and women's basketball teams on winning last week's NCAA tournaments. The White House says Obama commended men's head coach Kevin Ollie and his team on their decisive championship victory and noted how he enjoyed watching them throughout the tournament. He told women's head coach Geno Auriemma how impressive it was to see the team continue to dominate women's collegiate basketball.
Powered by WorldNow
Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices