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Elder Abuse and Fraud

Customers should beware of phone calls and emails from individuals claiming to be PHH Mortgage (PHH) employees demanding payments in the form of a pre-paid debit/gift card to cover trial loan modification payments,  tax payments and/or to avoid foreclosure. These imposters may be calling from what appears to be a legitimate PHH phone number. This is called "spoofing."    

If you receive a mysterious call or letter regarding the account, call us to confirm if the communication truly came from us. Also, double check the contact information listed on any letters you receive. Many scammers may attempt to copy an organization’s documents to get information or a payment from you.

Additional tips to help secure your money and personal information :

  1. Spot imposters. Fraudsters will usually misrepresent themselves as a trusted source, such as the government, or one of the lenders you have a relationship with. Do not give out personal information or send any money in response to an unexpected request.
  2. Know the signs of financial exploitation. Learn how to recognize patterns that might indicate unauthorized use of funds or resources such as unpaid bills, large or frequent withdrawals from bank accounts, suspicious signatures, and new “friends” that take a sudden interest in legal documents and financial arrangements.
  3. When in doubt, verify an unexpected request. If you receive an unexpected request by an individual claiming to be a trusted source, contact the source to verify if the contact was made by them.
  4. Don’t trust caller ID. Fraudsters can “spoof” their phone number so it appears that this person is calling from a trusted phone number. If the request is unexpected and you suspect you are experiencing a fraudulent attempt, do not give out personal information or send any money.
  5. Consider the payment method. Many fraud scams will ask that consumers pay in methods that cannot be traced or reversed. Suspicious requests of payment using a wire or gift card should be a red flag and you should not fulfill these requests. PHH will not informally communicate changes to payment methods. Always refer to your billing statements or call us to confirm any suspicious redirection of payment changes.
  6. Don’t pay upfront. Someone might ask you to pay in advance for things like debt relief, loan modifications, credit and loan offers, a job, or even a prize. If you pay things upfront, you likely will not see the promise fulfilled or get your money back.
  7. Open your mail. If you did provide personal information to a fraudster, believing the individual represented a trusted source, they may try to use that information to gain access to or make changes to one of your accounts. In these events, if suspicious activity is suspected, your lenders may attempt to contact you to verify the activity. Be sure to read all your mail and be on the lookout for such communications.
  8. Do your research. Before trusting a source or making any payments, look up the company or product to determine their credibility. Take the time to educate yourself first to protect yourself from losses.
  9. Monitor your credit frequently. You may obtain a free copy of your credit report from each of the three major credit reporting agencies once every 12 months. To request a copy, visit http://www.annualcreditreport.com, call 1-877-322-8228, or complete an Annual Credit Report Request Form and mail it to Annual Credit Report Request Service, P.O. Box 105281, Atlanta, GA 30348.
  10. Monitor the contact information on your account. Did you make any changes to your phone number, email address, or mailing address? Make sure we have your current information.
  11. Be especially aware of common types of senior financial abuse. This may include telemarketing and internet fraud, identity theft and credit card fraud, sweepstakes and lottery scams, investment schemes and fraud, and scams asking a senior to wire money or send prepaid debit cards to grandchildren or other family members in trouble.
  12. Report fraud. If you believe you have been a recent victim of fraud, reverse mortgage scam, false advertising, or other fraudulent behavior, you can file a complaint with the FTC at www.ftc.gov/idtheft or call 1-877-ID-THEFT (877-438-4338). Complaints filed with the FTC will be added to the FTC’s Identity Theft Data Clearinghouse, which is a database made available to law enforcement agencies.
Did you know? The National Reverse Mortgage Lenders Association and the National Aging in Place Council have partnered together to raise awareness about elder abuse and exploitation. Visit www.ageinplace.org and www.nrmlaonline.org for more resources.