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Advisors are getting scammed, where's "Dateline" now?

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“Scammers try to take advantage of senior citizens.” A true statement, unfortunately, and one we’ve all seen far too often in the media. We all know the “Dateline” story by now, how Chris Hanson and the NBC team did an expos? on advisors who sell annuities to seniors.

But, have you seen a headline like this one before: “Scammers target insurance agents.” No need for a double take. Yep, you read it right the first time–apparently there are scams out there trying to uncover important information from agents.

According to the Oklahoma Insurance Department, fraudsters are posing as insurance regulators to get “agents’ personal confidential information.”

In a report released in June, Insurance Commissioner Kim Holland sent a warning out to the state’s insurance producers and adjusters, telling them to “be on the lookout for imposters posing as Oklahoma Insurance Department employees seeking confidential personal information.”

According to the report, the Insurance Department “has received reports of individuals calling insurance agents representing themselves as employees of the Department and requesting the agents provide personal tax information via facsimile.”

A similar scam was reported in Nevada earlier this year. In this scenario, “imposters were calling agents and telling them that their licenses were going to be suspended for filing improper paperwork. They would then inform the agents that the situation could be rectified easily by providing personal information, such as a date of birth along with social security, credit card and telephone numbers.”

As a rule of thumb, if you’re contacted by someone claiming they’re from your state’s insurance department, your best bet would be to tell them you’ll have to call them back, then look up the correct contact information, call the insurance department and inquire if they are in fact seeking information from you.


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