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Officials warn about scam targeting senior citizens

By Dwayne Parker, Reporter, DParker@wfmz.com
Published On: Feb 05 2013 06:00:00 PM CST
Updated On: Feb 06 2013 04:40:01 AM CST

Criminals are trying to scam seniors in Berks County out of hundreds of dollars, authorities said.

Criminals are trying to scam seniors in Berks County out of hundreds of dollars, authorities said.

The con artists are calling senior citizens, and claiming to sell a prescription drug plan for $299 a year, officials said.

The crooks then then ask for the senior's bank account number and Social Security card number.

BerksEncore has teamed up with ScamWire and the PA Senior Medicare Patrol to inform families about this costly scam.

"I'm very concerned because seniors are easily frightened into thinking maybe they're going to lose something if they don't take action," said Dot Hartman, director for community-based aging services at BerksEncore.

Hartman also says to be on the lookout if the criminal tries to rush you into signing up for anything.

"If you have to take it in the next 10 minutes or it won't be valid-- that's a total red flag," said Hartman. "Medicare would never ask for a banking account. Medicare doesn't need to know your financial information."

Officials also say if you are unsure about the offer, demand that the information be sent to you in writing.

If you have questions about suspicious phone calls, you can call BerksEncore at (610) 374-3195, extension 208.