We recently got word of another scam that is proliferating; a company under the name of Senior Alertline has framed itself to look like Philips Lifeline, a medical alert service for elders, and is basically out to collect seniors’ credit card information. Below is an alert letter from the senior director of Philips Lifeline describing the scam in more detail and what to watch out for. Please contact our Senior Medicare Patrol office if you come across any such scam at 1-855-613-7080.
Dear Lifeline Program partner,
I wanted to alert you of a fraudulent situation that has recently been identified that could impact your subscribers or seniors in your community. A company referring to itself as Senior Alertline has been calling large numbers of seniors using an automated dialing technology. The company had created a website that essentially copied the Philips Lifeline website. The design and photography was the same as the Lifeline website, and some of the phone numbers in their website actually pointed to Lifeline. When asked, the fraudulent call center indicated they were based out of Framingham, MA (though our investigation has identified the call center as existing in Florida). This appears to be a fast moving outfit, as they have already changed their website (www.senioralertline.com) and they are now copying another PERS provider’s website. Obviously, there are severe legal implications with this fraudulent company’s activities. Apparently, this enterprise is also being pursued by a state attorney general in the mid-west, as hundreds of senior related scams have already been reported. This company is only interested in gaining access to a senior’s credit cards. A variety of tactics are being used including the promise of a free gift, inexpensive PERS service, free PERS equipment etc.
Our privacy people and legal team are actively pursuing a variety of means in order to shut this scam down as quickly as possible. However, because Senior Alertline is using automated dialing, they are reaching many consumers very quickly. To compound this situation, LifeAlert and other PERs providers have also begun investing in these automated dialing methods. This may make it challenging for seniors to understand and differentiate between a legally acceptable marketing approach and a scam.
We wanted you to be aware of this situation, in case any of your subscribers or seniors in your community contact you with regard to PERS related calls they may have received or any unusual charges showing up on their credit card bill. If a subscriber does report an unusual charge, they should contact the bank that issued their credit card to stop the fraudulent charge. If your subscriber contacts you, we would encourage you to inform them that there are a number of PERS related scams going on. They should not give out their credit card to anyone and simply tell the inquiring caller they are not interested.
Unfortunately, this is not the first industry related scam, and it will likely not be the last. Rest assured we will work to hastily resolve any fraudulent activities that come to our attention. I will keep you apprised should the situation warrant further communication. Should you have any questions or should you be contacted by any subscribers reporting unusual activity, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mark Rutherford, Senior Director, Healthcare, Philips Lifeline