WCAV-WVAW-WAHU | Charlottesville, Virginia | News

Medical Alert Phone Scam Targeting Va. Seniors

May 14, 2013

The Better Business Bureau (BBB) Serving Central Virginia warns of a telemarketing scam reported by seniors in the Richmond, Fredericksburg, King William and Alexandria areas over the past two days.

In most cases seniors are receiving “robo-calls” from a company identifying itself as “Medical Alert Systems” or “Senior Medical Labs” offering a free medical alert system. They claim everything is paid for including shipping and handling.

Consumers are also told they have been recommended for the product by a family friend or relative. After consumers press a button to accept the offer, they quickly receive another call asking for personal information including credit card numbers.

Consumers have reported several different options with these phone calls. In some instances the pre-recorded voice asks the consumer to press 1 to accept, in other cases to press 5. Consumers have also reported receiving calls from customer service representatives who give the same offer.

No matter what option or explanation is offered, consumers are being advised to simply hang-up the telephone.

“Never, ever, give out your personal information over the phone to an unknown party,” said Tom Gallagher, President and CEO of BBB Serving Central Virginia. “Be sure your telephone number is listed on the Do Not Call Registry.”

The BBB advises you to be wary of anyone offering you something for “free” in exchange for your personal information. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

Consumer and business scams should quickly be reported to BBB at 804-648-0016 or through its website at www.richmond.bbb.org.

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