FREEHOLD, NJ – As the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issues new Medicare cards with unique identification numbers to all beneficiaries, Monmouth County officials remind residents that they should be wary of fraud schemes launched by scammers.
“These scammers have changed tactics now that social security numbers are no longer on Medicare Cards,” said Freeholder Deputy Director Lillian G. Burry, liaison to the Monmouth County Division of Consumer Affairs. “We want to make sure residents are informed about these schemes to prevent falling prey to them and having to deal with identity theft or worse.”
- Callers pretend to be Medicare representatives asking for a processing fee or other immediate credit card payment before a new card is issued. The cards are free of charge and are being mailed automatically to all beneficiaries.
- Callers claiming to be from Medicare are asking beneficiaries to purchase a temporary card. Temporary cards are not being mailed out by Medicare and there is no cost.
- Beneficiaries are asked to verify Social Security number, address or other personal information before a new card is sent. Medicare will not call beneficiaries to ask for personal data.
- Caller says there is a problem with your new Medicare card, such as the card being lost or someone else has tried to use it. They ask for personal information or payment for a new card. CMS began mailing out new cards in April 2018 and the process is expected to continue until April 2019. You can review which states are currently receiving new cards at medicare.gov/newcard.
- Some scammers are asking beneficiaries to mail in their old Medicare Card. Do not send your card to anyone. As soon as you receive your new card, destroy the old one.
If You Suspect a Scam or Have Questions
If someone asks you for your personal information, for money or threatens to cancel your health benefits if you don’t share your personal information, hang up and call Medicare directly at 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227).
If you suspect identity theft or feel like you gave your personal information to someone you shouldn’t have, call or visit online the Federal Trade Commission 1-877-FTC-HELP (1-877-382-4357).
Check the status of your new card. https://www.medicare.gov/newcard/