Lincoln police chief warns of scam Medicare caller

Posted Oct. 23, 2012, at 7:57 p.m.
Lincoln Police Chief William Lawrence
Lincoln Police Chief William Lawrence

LINCOLN, Maine — If you receive a call from a man identifying himself as a government official who says he needs your Medicare card number and date of birth, don’t give him any information, Police Chief William Lawrence said Tuesday.

The call is a scam, he said.

Police have received four reports since Oct. 9 of what they say likely are scams. Three of the complainants declined to file reports, saying they only wanted police to be aware of the scam, Lawrence said.

Detective David Cram is investigating the fourth complainant’s report, but Lawrence is not optimistic about Cram’s chances of catching the scammer.

“These scam artists can be anywhere,” Lawrence said Tuesday. “They can be out of the country, and in most cases, they are.”

The woman who filed a complaint with police told officers that she took calls on Oct. 9 and 16. In at least one case, she saw through the subterfuge enough to refuse to give the caller any of the information he had sought, instead asking to speak to his supervisor. The number he gave rang to a disconnected number, Lawrence said.

“We are not aware of anybody being hit by this scam,” Lawrence said.

Anyone who wishes to report receiving a scam call or who has or seeks other information may call police at 794-8455, Lawrence said.

The scam calls all feature the same basic details. The man usually targets senior citizens and calls in the early evening hours, Lawrence said.

The scam artist could use the information sought to rob his victims through electronic means or could sell the information he receives to third parties, Lawrence said.

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