National Consumer Protection Week is February 28 to March 6
The District of Columbia Department of Insurance, Securities and Banking (DISB) is alerting the public about scams related to the coronavirus (COVID-19). COVID-19 scammers use telemarketing calls, text messages, social media platforms and door-to-door visits to target residents.
EXAMPLE: Fraudsters are misleadingly offering COVID-19 tests, Health and Human Services (HHS) grants, Medicare prescription cards and expedited access to vaccines. The scammers ask for personal details, including Medicare information. However, these services are unapproved and illegitimate. Personal information collected can be used to bill federal health care programs fraudulently and commit medical identity theft.
- Be vigilant and protect yourself from potential fraud concerning COVID-19 vaccines. You should not be asked for money to enhance your ranking for vaccine eligibility. Government and State officials will not call you nor will they solicit door to door to obtain personal information from residents to receive the vaccine.
- Be suspicious of any unexpected calls or visitors offering COVID-19 tests or supplies. If you receive a suspicious call, hang up immediately.
- Do not respond to or open hyperlinks in text messages about COVID-19 from unknown individuals.
- Ignore offers or advertisements for COVID-19 testing or treatments on social media sites. If you make an appointment for a COVID-19 test online, make sure the location is an official testing site. Visit coronavirus.dc.gov/testing.
- Do not give your personal or financial information to anyone claiming to offer HHS grants related to COVID-19.
If you believe you have been a victim of scammers posing as healthcare professionals, please contact the DISB Enforcement and Consumer Protection Division at (202) 727-8000.