New Medicare cards being released in 2018 will no longer carry Social Security numbers. This change was developed to make the cards more secure and prevent fraud as well as identity theft.
Identify theft has been increasing in recent years among those age 65 and older. In accordance with the latest numbers released by the Department of Justice, the reported cases of identity theft increased up to 2.6 million as early as 2014. This is an increase in half a million cases from just two years prior.
Here’s exactly what you will need to understand about the newly released cards:
- The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Solutions (CMS) is going to begin mailing cards to recipients in April.
- The cards will be sent through the mail delivery system to all 58 million existing beneficiaries. You don’t need to take any action in order to receive your card.
- The newly released cards will contain an assigned Medicare Beneficiary Identifier (MBI) which consists of a combination of 11 numbers and letters.
- Your benefits are not going to have any changes under the updated MBI.
Frauds connected to the brand new cards are beginning to appear. Some current Medicare recipients have reported receiving telephone calls from scammers who are telling them that they need to pay for their new Medicare card and then asking for their bank account number or Medicare card numbers. Don’t provide either number through a phone call.
Medicare recipients are advised to not provide their number over the phone as this request is likely a fraud. Also, anyone who tells you that you have to pay for your new card is more than likely a scammer. If you have a reason to contact CMS or they contact you for any reason, they are not going to require that you tell them your number since they already have access to that number through their system.
We want to be certain you are financially protected. Naturally, should this prompt questions about other ways we can help you, please reach out to us.