Government Halts Telemarketing Scam

 Targeting Seniors

 

Staten Island Business Bank Points to federal crackdown on fake ‘Medicare’ scheme 

 

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. --In its ongoing mission of alerting business owners and consumers to the threat of fraud, Victory State Bank, Staten Island’s only community-based business bank, is highlighting one of the latest government crackdowns on a scam targeting senior citizens.

At the Federal Trade Commission’s request, a federal court halted a telemarketing scheme that tricked senior citizensby pretending to be part of Medicare, and took millions of dollars from consumers’ bank accounts without their consent. As part of its ongoing work to protect every community from fraud, the FTC seeks to permanently end the operation and return victims’ money.

According to a complaint filed by the FTC, the defendants called consumers– including many whose numbers were listed on the National Do Not Call Registry – and said they were providing a new Medicare card or information about Medicare benefits.

The defendants allegedly misrepresented that they were working on behalf of Medicare, and said they needed to verify consumers’ identities using personal information that included their bank account numbers. The defendants allegedly assured consumers that the information would not be used to debit their bank accounts, and that there was no charge for the new Medicare card or information about Medicare benefits.

However, within a few weeks, consumers learned their bank accounts had been debited either $399 or $448 via remotely created checks (RCCs), the complaint alleges. Despite these charges, consumers did not receive any kind of product or service from the defendants. In some instances, the defendants debited the accounts of consumers they had not even contacted.

The FTC charged the defendants with violating the FTC Act and the FTC’s Telemarketing Sales Rule. The defendants are Sun Bright Ventures LLC, Citadel ID Pro LLC, and Benjamin Todd Workman. The FTC named Trident Consulting Partners LLC and Glenn Erickson as relief defendants who profited from the scheme.

 

 

About Victory State Bank

VSB Bancorp, Inc. (OTCQB: VSBN) is the one-bank holding company for Victory State Bank. As Staten Island, N.Y.’s only community-based commercial bank, Victory State Bank operates five full-service locations on the Island: The main office in the community of Great Kills, and branches in the communities of West Brighton, St. George, Dongan Hills and Rosebank.  For additional information, Victory State Bank may be reached at 718-979-1100 or visited online at www.victorystatebank.com.

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