The Post Ledger received an alert from Longenecker Pharmacy in Parkesburg about a possible scam currently taking place. An elderly customer of the pharmacy reported receiving several phone calls from the same number, with the caller harassing her for personal information.According to the customer, the caller(s) requested information such as her bank account numbers and her social security number. They even mentioned Longenecker Pharmacy and said they were calling about medical insurance.
"Longenecker Pharmacy is a name that senior citizens trust," said Jodi Muldoon, a Medicare consultant at the pharmacy. "We want them to know that we have absolutely no affiliation with this number. If anyone receives similar a call from this number, we want them to hang up immediately and call us."
The number Longenecker Pharmacy was warned about is 800-223-9113. A Google search of the number leads to a variety of blog pages with dozens of reports similar to this. The callers from this number have reportedly called at all hours of the day and night and used a variety of excuses for needing the personal information.
In most of the cases, the caller reportedly hung up the phone when asked who was calling. A handful of the blog entries said the callers identified themselves as calling on behalf of domain name services. In these particular cases, the caller claimed to have gotten the recipient's information from a domain-hosting site and said there was time-sensitive updating that needed to be done to the account, and they needed the person's information immediately.
One case reported that the caller told an elderly woman they needed her checking account number so they could protect her Social Security benefits. When the woman's grandson got on the phone, the caller told him his grandmother would "be suffering dire consequences of not receiving a Social Security check because she would not give information on her banking account."
Those with caller id who returned the call after being hung up on reported being directed to a voice recording saying a four-digit code is needed to continue.
Several of the blogs also listed a second number, 800-224-8606, which is suspected to be in connection with the first, as the phone calls are very similar in nature.
According to the Pennsylvania Attorney General's office, the best thing to do if you receive a phone call asking for personal information, is to get the name of the company who is calling and tell them you will call them back with the information. Once you look up the number and confirm that the call was legitimate, it is probably safe to give the information.
If the caller refuses to tell you their name or business, consider it a fraudulent call and do not give them any personal information.
More information: http://www.attorneygeneral.gov/i dtheft.aspx?id=1757