• No, Medicare is not offering free DNA kits

    By: Jason Stoogenke

    Updated:

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Barney Hodgson said his 92-year-old mother got a package offering her a free DNA kit and it looked as if it came from Medicare.

    [9 Investigates: Genetic surprises with home DNA tests]

    "They said, 'If you send this back, we can let you know if you have cancer or some other illnesses," he told Action 9's Jason Stoogenke.

    He said a scammer followed up with a phone call. 

    "People calling her, wanting to know if she got the package and, then, would she send some samples of saliva," Hodgson said.

    "They can be scamming, trying to either get your Medicaid, Medicare number or they're trying to get your DNA," North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein said. "Either way, you don't want to hand that information off to somebody you don't know."

    Hodgson said his mother may have handed off her personal information, but he isn't sure. 

    "I don't know if she gave them her Social Security number or Medicare number or not," he said. 

    Also, he's not sure why the scammer chose her.

    Stoogenke tried to call the number the scammer used, but no one answered.

    Medicare doesn’t market any DNA kits to the public, so don’t give out any personal information to a scammer saying they are with Medicare, Stoogenke said. 

    Government officials almost never call you out of the blue.

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