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Phone scams on the rise in Idaho

Medicare scams are on the rise in Idaho. A Preston woman says she got a suspicious phone call from someone who told her she needed to verify her bank account number in order to receive a new Medicare card.

Senior citizens can be very trusting, which can make them easy targets of phone scams.

Meet Teresa Morris. She said she’s had her phone ring off the hook. And on the other end were scammers trying to get personal information and money.

“I did get scammed last summer, and you get the phone calls that it’s your grandson — your favorite grandchild,” said Morris.

Quickly Morris’s guard dropped. It’s family on the phone right? Well guess again.
Scammers tend to use any line to get you talking on the phone.

“I gave the scammer all the information. I said ‘Is this my grandson so and so?'” said Morris.

That’s all it took for the scammer to gain Morris’ trust, money, and information. It’s something she said she’ll never forget and won’t let happen again.

“The most important thing because I didn’t think about it until it was over — do not give names,” said Morris.

According to experts, the best thing to do, is to look no further than Stella Peterson and how she handled the scam calls.

“One called and wanted my social security number — and I told him what to do and hung up. I didn’t give any information at all.” said Peterson.

The good news is that many of the senior citizens I talked with today said they’re aware of scams. But here are some tips to help protect your information:

-Never give out your personal information.This includes credit cards, bank accounts, and your social security number.

-Check your caller id before picking up the phone. This will allow you to be cautious if you don’t know the number.

-Always ask who is calling you first when you answer the phone. This act can actually throw off a scammer.

The Eastern Idaho Community Action Partnership said they deal with up to five scams a month.

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