AOA cautions against email and phone scams

The AOA has been alerted about another voice phishing scam (known as "vishing"). A member reported that a person called and claimed to be from the U.S. Department of Justice Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA). The caller said they had been notified by the FBI that there was illegal activity with the doctor's medical license and that it would be revoked. The member told the caller he wanted to verify with his state board that there was a problem with his license. The caller then hung up and has not called back.

If you suspect vishing call, you can file an online complaint with the DEA here.

Click here for helpful tips from the Federal Trade Commission to protect yourself from phone scams.

Email phishing scams
These malicious emails fraudulently appear to originate from a known or trusted sender to elicit confidential information, such as passwords, account numbers or other sensitive data. These schemers go to great lengths to trick users, and target victims ranging from individuals and small businesses to large corporations. The FBI's Internet Crime Complaint Center offers these tips below for avoiding deleterious emails or phone calls.

4 ways to prevent falling victim to scams   
Whether it's phishing by email or phone, doctors of optometry and their paraoptometric staff can protect themselves and their patients. Beyond reporting abuses, they can:

  • Be suspicious: Take a skeptical approach to any unsolicited email or phone call, especially those asking for personal, financial or network security information.
  • Keep confidential information confidential: Personal, financial or network security information that falls into the wrong hands can cost you and your business dearly.
  • Be wary of links, web addresses: Spear-phishing scams often mimic trusted parties by making miniscule changes in email extensions or links.
  • Make contact: Reach out to the actual business or entity that supposedly sent the email or called to verify its validity.