Warning! Obamacare Will Attract Cons and Fraud
Besides the confusing complexities of the Affordable Care Act, now leading consumer experts are warning citizens about the growing number of con-artists looking to profit from the confusion felt by most Americans.
CNBC reported Thursday that as we get closer to Oct. 1 (when the state health care exchanges are supposed to open), many consumers will be swindled.
Lois Greisman, associate director of the Bureau of Consumer Protection at the Federal Trade Commission, says the tremendous confusion creates opportunity for fraudsters.
On Oct. 1 Americans without insurance can go to these state exchanges and shop for a program they think will serve their needs. Mike Kriedler, Washington state's insurance commissioner says those with insurance can also shop at the exchanges to see if they can get a better deal.
But many of the bogus exchange websites are sophisticated and some of the scammers are using stolen or replicated official government logos on the sites.
According to CNBC:
There are fake exchanges already up and running on the Internet," said Monica Lindeen, Montana's Commissioner of Securities and Insurance. "If you do a search and type in 'exchange,' you'll find all sorts of websites that claim to be in the exchange when they are not."
Officials say that a large number of savvy consumers have already been swindled up to hundreds of thousands of dollars. They set up a plan and make their online payments or deposits only to find their bank accounts cleaned out.
If consumers do choose to utilize Obamacare, one of the safest ways to start the search and avoid fraud is to go to the official government website: HealthCare.gov.
This site has complete details of the 17 states (including Washington) that have already set up their exchanges and those reportedly ready by Oct. 1.
By the way, 26 states have refused to set up exchanges and are preparing legal action against the federal government.