County residents warned about Medicare Scam
(Woodbury, NJ) – The Gloucester County Board of Chosen Freeholders and the County Office of Consumer Affairs would like to warn senior citizens of previous attempts by scammers to lure unsuspecting individuals into giving out personal information.
In recent months and weeks, a group calling themselves "Good Samaritans of America" have succeeded in duping seniors into providing personal information and even exposing themselves to genetic testing.
Freeholder Director Robert Damminger said, "It is astounding what clever scams people can come up with just to defraud individuals and government programs to enrich themselves no matter who they hurt. Under no circumstances should seniors, or anyone else, submit to genetic testing by swabbing of DNA or release personal information."
As another angle to this ploy, the scammers used fear-based tactics during this scheme, up to and including ideas that seniors would be vulnerable to heart attacks, stroke, cancer and suicide if they did not consent to the testing. The scammers also claimed that in order to make sure the medication they were taking was not hurting them, the swabbing would confirm any maladies, which was purely false.
Although the ringleader, Seth Rehfuss, was charged by criminal complaint in early December on one count of healthcare fraud, anyone who may have been a victim of this scam should call local police and then contact Social Security or Medicare to let them know your information may have been compromised.
“If our residents take nothing else from this new invasive scam, please do not let people into your home that you do not know, or people who cannot show credible identification. If the person insists he/she is from a legitimate non-profit organization and you are still not comfortable, call 9-1-1,” said Freeholder Lyman Barnes, Liaison to Consumer Affairs.
If you would like more information on identity theft and other scams, please contact the county Office of Consumer Affairs at 856-384-6855.