I-Team: Robo-call scam claims to be Life Alert - FOX 29 News Philadelphia | WTXF-TV

I-Team: Robo-call scam claims to be Life Alert

Posted: Updated:

Here's a scam warning that you need to know about. It's causing such a stir that a life-saving medical company is filing a lawsuit to get it to stop.

FOX5 I-Team's Dana Fowle has this important story on a robo-call that consumer advocates say is targeted at tricking the elderly. There is a warning going out all across the U.S. concerning a phone call that officers a free service – but, in the end, is anything but free.

Dana followed up with Marcel Cole, an Atlanta man and retired truck driver who says he gets so many soliciting calls a day that he's started keeping a list of them. Despite the list growing, there is one caller in particular who stands out right now.  

The Better Business Bureau warns of a telemarketing scam by companies who say they're a free service for senior citizens so they can send an alert to emergency responders if the senior citizen falls or gets sick.  

Cole said, "That somebody had already paid for it. They would pay the postage. All they wanted me to do then was give 'em my address and I can't tell you what I told them, but ... I told them to go to hell!"   

The BBB says that had Cole agreed with this so-called freebie he would have been directed to  press a button to accept the offer, and then, he would have been asked to provide his personal banking information.   

Cole says each time the caller asked for his information he said "No!" He said that wasn't the end of it. The calls kept coming.

Now, Life Alert is a well-known emergency response company.  And in a letter to prosecutors nationwide, company officials say they are getting complaints that other companies are impersonating them - going as far as to use their famous slogan, "Help, I've fallen and I can't get up!'   

This is a reminder that if a stranger calls and offers you something for free in exchange for your personal information, then hang up the phone. If you think the call is from a legitimate source, then ask the caller to mail the offer and company information to you.

And, what about those ‘Do Not Call' lists? Cole says he's on that list and subscribes to a privacy manager through his phone services and is STILL getting calls from telemarketers. The Do Not Call list is only as good as the companies that participate. Scammers tend to not sign up to be part of the program.

  • I-Team Story ArchiveMore>>

  • Unresolved bank errors? Help is on the way

    Unresolved bank errors? Help is on the way

    Monday, July 28 2014 8:11 AM EDT2014-07-28 12:11:30 GMT
    Taking on a big bank, even over something like a minor bank error, can be maddening. You feel like no one is listening. It's like being trapped in a maze you can't get out of, but somebody is noticing how frustrating that can be.
    Taking on a big bank, even over something like a minor bank error, can be maddening. You feel like no one is listening. It's like being trapped in a maze you can't get out of, but somebody is noticing how frustrating that can be.
  • I-Team Investigation

    Former Douglas Co. D.A. office manager indicted

    Former Douglas Co. D.A. office manager indicted

    Sunday, July 27 2014 3:24 PM EDT2014-07-27 19:24:49 GMT
    There are major new developments today in the state investigation of the Douglas County District Attorney's office. Tammy Agan, the former office manager, has been indicted on 58 counts of theft and making false statements.
    There are major new developments today in the state investigation of the Douglas County District Attorney's office. Tammy Agan, the former office manager, has been indicted on 58 counts of theft and making false statements.
  • Whistleblower Seeks Sanctions Against Attorney General's Office

    Whistleblower Seeks Sanctions Against Attorney General's Office

    Friday, July 25 2014 9:59 PM EDT2014-07-26 01:59:29 GMT
    In a letter, obtained exclusively by the Fox 5 I-Team, former Ethics director Stacey Kalberman's plans to seek sanctions against the state Attorney General's office.
    More controversy involving the State Ethics Commission. In a letter, obtained exclusively by the Fox 5 I-Team, former Ethics director Stacey Kalberman's plans to seek sanctions against the state Attorney General's office.
  • Contact the FOX 5 I-Team

    * denotes required fields

    We're sorry, but only one entry is allowed per person.
    Thank you for your continued interest.

    Thanks for contacting FOX 5.  To reach our newsroom by phone, please call (404) 898-0100.

  • Good Day ArchiveMore>>

  • Back to School Jamboree with Hosea Feed The Hungry

    Back to School Jamboree with Hosea Feed The Hungry

    Hosea Feed the Hungry will host their annual Back to School Jamboree on Sunday, July 13, 2014 from 10:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m. at Turner Field. Children will receive a backpack filled with school supplies.

    Hosea Feed the Hungry will host their annual Back to School Jamboree on Sunday, July 13, 2014 from 10:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m. at Turner Field. Children will receive a backpack filled with school supplies.

  • Sandy Springs Park presents "Touching" art display

    Sandy Springs Park presents "Touching" art display

    Monday, July 28 2014 8:57 AM EDT2014-07-28 12:57:44 GMT
    For many area students and teachers, school starts next week.  So this week on Good Day Atlanta, we're checking out "cool" spots to
    For many area students and teachers, school starts next week. So this week on Good Day Atlanta, we're checking out "cool" spots to enjoy those last few days of summer.
  • Pet 'matchmaking' service increases adoptions

    Pet 'matchmaking' service increases adoptions

    Monday, July 28 2014 8:13 AM EDT2014-07-28 12:13:37 GMT
    You've probably heard of a match-making service that helps people find their soul mates.But you may not know that there's a nonprofit in Atlanta that offers a similar service....for people to find....the perfect pet.
    You've probably heard of a match-making service that helps people find their soul mates.But you may not know that there's a nonprofit in Atlanta that offers a similar service....for people to find....the perfect pet.
Powered by WorldNow

WTXF-TV
330 Market Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106-2796

Phone: (215) 925-2929
Fax: (215) 982-5494

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices