New York Warns Agents on Identity Theft Scam

July 6, 2009

New York State licensed insurance agents and brokers should be aware of an identity theft scam involving telephone calls used to target insurance professionals in at least a half dozen states.

Acting New York Insurance Superintendent Kermitt Brooks today warned that the scam involves individuals who telephone agents and brokers and pretend to be state insurance department representatives. The callers tell potential victims that their licenses to sell insurance will be cancelled because of outstanding paperwork or fines unless they provide credit card numbers and other personal information to pay fines.

“It’s important for agents and brokers in New York State to be aware of this because these types of scams typically travel across the country. The scam has already been reported in a half dozen states from California to Ohio,” Brooks said.

Brooks noted that it is not the policy or practice of the department to solicit any personal information over the phone. Agents or brokers who receive phone calls like this should immediately contact local law enforcement authorities and the Insurance Department’s Frauds Bureau, Brooks said. The Frauds Bureau can be reached toll-free at 1-888-FRAUDNY.

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