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Government warns of hotline scam

March 20, 2017

By Jennifer Garvin

Washington — The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General has issued a fraud alert saying that the OIG Hotline telephone number is being used as part of a telephone spoofing scam targeting individuals throughout the country.

"These scammers represent themselves as HHS OIG Hotline employees and can alter the appearance of the caller ID to make it seem as if the call is coming from the HHS OIG Hotline, 1-800-HHS-TIPS (1-800-447-8477)," the OIG said in the alert.

"The perpetrator may use various tactics to obtain or verify the victim's personal information, which can then be used to steal money from an individual's bank account or for other fraudulent activity. HHS OIG takes this matter seriously.

"We are actively investigating this matter and intend to have the perpetrators prosecuted."

Dentists who are victims of the telephone spoofing scam can contact the HHS OIG Hotline by phone at 1-800-447-8477 or email at

Dentists may also file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission at 1-877-382-4357.