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That's not Medicare calling... Watch out for Phone Scams and Spoofing!

The Erie County Office of Consumer Protection was alerted to a scam involving unsolicited calls requesting consumers’ Medicare account information and potential phone spoofing.

Phone scams are popular amongst thieves trying to get personal or financial information from unsuspecting consumers. Scammers could ask for your credit card number or insurance information, claim that you’ve won a prize, or pretend to be someone as they try to steal your identity and money. With the use of technology for phone spoofing, they are getting better at disguising themselves.

Per the Federal Communications Commission, “Spoofing is when a caller deliberately falsifies the information transmitted to your caller ID display to disguise their identity. Scammers often use neighbor spoofing so it appears that an incoming call is coming from a local number, or spoof a number from a company or a government agency that you may already know and trust.”

Insurance and Medicare account information can be used by a scammer, like a credit card number. The website provides helpful information on recognizing, avoiding, and reporting potential Medicare fraud and abuse. They also offer the following “tips to protect yourself from becoming an identity theft victim.


  • Protect your Medicare Number and your Social Security Number.
  • Guard your Medicare card like it’s a credit card.
  • Become familiar with how Medicare uses your personal information. If you join a Medicare health or drug plan, the plan will let you know how it will use your personal information.
  • Remember that Medicare will never call you to sell you anything or visit you at your home. Medicare, or someone representing Medicare, will only call and ask for personal information in these 2 situations:
    1. A Medicare health or drug plan may call you if you’re already a member of the plan. The agent who helped you join can also call you.
    2. A customer service representative from 1-800-MEDICARE can call you if you’ve called and left a message or a representative said that someone would call you back.
  • Contact the Federal Trade Commission if you think you’ve been a victim of identity theft.


  • Give your Medicare card, Medicare Number, Social Security card, or Social Security Number to anyone except your doctor or people you know should have it (like insurers acting on your behalf or people who work with Medicare, like your State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP). Get the contact information for your local SHIP.
  • Accept offers of money or gifts for free medical care.
  • Allow anyone, except your doctor or other Medicare providers, to review your medical records or recommend services.
  • Join a Medicare health or drug plan over the phone unless you called us.”

If you suspect that Medicare is being charged for an item or service you didn't get, or your Medicare card or number is stolen, use the contact information below to report suspected fraud or abuse.

If you experience:


Provider fraud or abuse in Original Medicare (including a fraudulent claim, or a claim from a provider you didn’t get care from)

1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227)


The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services – Office of the Inspector General

Provider fraud or abuse in a Medicare Advantage Plan or a Medicare drug plan (including a fraudulent claim)

1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227)


The Investigations Medicare Drug Integrity Contractor
(I-MEDIC) at 1-877-7SAFERX (1-877-772-3379), or by US mail:

28464 Marlboro Avenue
Easton, MD 21601
Attn: I-MEDIC 

Consumers can find additional information regarding telephone scams at

Please do not hesitate to contact our office for assistance if you have been scammed or have questions about avoiding or reporting Medicare fraud. The Erie County Office of Consumer Protection can be reached by phone at 716-858-1987 or via email to Consumer Protection complaints can also be submitted through our website.

 “Caller ID Spoofing.” Federal Communications Commission,,to%20%2410%2C000%20for%20each%20violation.
“Reporting Medicare Fraud & Abuse.” Medicare,