The agency is making the switch as an attempt to make seniors less vulnerable to fraud by replacing the recipient’s Social Security number, which is printed on the card and doubles as their account number, with a new Medicare Number.
However, instead of making seniors less vulnerable, the change ignited scammers as they are now using the new card release to target seniors with phishing scams.
Medicare dedicated a portion of its website for seniors, with information on how to avoid getting scammed.
The agency said no one from Medicare would ever call seniors uninvited asking questions to get new Medicare number and card information.
Scam artists may try to get personal information, under the guise of contacting seniors about their new card or stating that their identity has been stolen and that they must provide their social security number to confirm their identity.
All of these, the agency revealed, should raise red flags and they are urging seniors to hang up and call Medicare at 1-800-MEDICARE or 1-800-633-4227.
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services was required to remove Social Security Numbers from all Medicare cards by April 2019 and mailed out new Medicare cards based on geographic location and other factors.