Many people think of identity theft only in the context of someone using your good name and credit history to get money or purchase things. But your name and personal information can be used in other contexts as as well. Below is some information about Medical Indentity Theft, courtesy of Trusted ID – The Top Name in Identity Theft Protection. Click here for more information & 30 Day Risk Free Trial!
What is medical identity theft?
Medical identity theft is when someone uses your personal information without your knowledge or consent to obtain, or receive payment for, medical treatment, services, or goods. When this happens to you, the thief’s treatments could show up on your record, be taken out of your benefits, and even disqualify you from new health insurance. And most dangerous of all, if the thief’s medical history is confused with yours, your own medical care could be jeopardized.
Medical identity theft is a growing area of identity theft, and one that can have dire consequences. In addition to proactive protection for your financial identity, TrustedID can help prevent this new threat by protecting your medical identity and benefits.
- – 3 percent of all identity theft victims in 2005 were victims of medical identity theft, which means of 8.3 million ID theft victims, approximately 250,000 people were victimized by medical identity theft in that year alone
- – Identity Theft Resource Center (2004) follow up to “Identity Theft: The Aftermath 2003” survey found that 23% of survey respondents found that “Using my information, someone obtained medical services.”
- – Health care fraud accounts for an estimated 3 to 10 percent of all health care costs, or 80 to 120 billion dollars of loss per year
- – Organized patterns of this crime tend to involve what is called “clinic takeover.” this is where a group purchases a small clinic, operates the scam out it for a few months to a year, then shuts the operation down and disappears. During the time of operation, these scams lure patients into their offices with promises of free checkups. When patients come in with the medical information, that information can be copied.
How to prevent medical identity theft:
- 1) Keep your health information private. Don’t share your policy information with anyone without knowing how that person plans to use it, who else will have access to it, and how the information will be protected. TrustedID scans black market areas of the Internet to check whether your policy information is being shared or sold online.
- 2) Avoid offers for free medical services, especially if they are asking for your medical information. TrustedID’s Resource Center offers the most updated information regarding the latest identity theft scams and data breaches you should be aware of.
- 3) Check your medical benefits statement for inaccuracies. TrustedID makes sure no one but you and your family is using your medical benefits by helping you review your annual medical benefits statement. TrustedID’s trained restoration specialists will help you resolve any inaccurate information you find.
- 4) Monitor your credit reports with the three major credit bureaus to identity reports of medical debts. TrustedID will request your free annual credit reports on your behalf and if you notice any suspicious activity, TrustedID’s trained restoration specialists will help you through the steps of recovering your identity and preventing any further damage.
- 5) Sign up with TrustedID to protect your medical benefits, Social Security number, bank and credit card accounts and more.