News 12 at 6 o'clock / September 5, 2013
NORTH AUGUSTA, SC (WRDW)
"I kept asking is this a fraud," says Kay Waldrop. She says she regrets not following her instincts after getting a call this week from someone claiming to represent Medicare.
"They said no this is not a fraud, " says Waldrop. Suspicious, she asked more questions. "Why didn't everyone get a letter. You mean your calling everyone," says Waldrop.
She says the caller told her it is a new program and she would be getting a new Medicare card in the mail. All she needed to do was provide her checking account information which she did.
But she says when the caller promised her a gift of $500 she realized she had been scammed. "The time I hung up from them I called my bank and they said we'll put an alert on it but you've got to come out here and close it up which i did," says Waldrop.
Gigi Turner with Augusta's Better Business Bureau says consumers must be careful who they provide checking account information to. "I'm not comfortable with giving my checking account number to anyone over the phone. If you did not place the call do not give the information," says Turner.
While Waldrop stopped the scammers from wiping out her account she wants others to know about it so it does not happen to them. "I would just like all the senior citizens to know about this because it is so real," says Waldrop.
She says the caller even had her routing number from her account which is why she believed it was legit. But depending on the state you live in and bank you use, that 9-digit routing number will be the same.
As far as how the scammer knew Waldrop banked with Bank of America to begin with, it appears it may have just been a good guess.