The Texas Board of Nursing (BON) recently encouraged nurses to stay vigilant when they get a phone call that claims to be from their organization. The Board staff stated that fraudsters claiming to be from the TX BON are calling nurses and telling them they are under investigation. These fraudsters then threaten the nurses, stating that they have suspended the nurse’s license, and that the suspension will remain until the nurse pays a fee.
Once the nurse provides financial information to pay the fee, the scammer uses that information to attempt to further steal their identity.
Nurses are savvy professionals; they are unlikely to answer or respond to a caller from an unknown phone number making these types of claims. That is what makes this scam so advanced — the contact appears to come from an official BON number.
How do I know if the call is from a scam artist?
In general, even if the number appears to come from a legitimate source, the following red flags indicate that the call is likely part of a scam:
- Demand for payment. Any caller that demands immediate payment over the phone is likely part of a scam.
- Refusal to answer questions. It is also questionable if the caller cannot answer questions about the investigation. Although some portions may be confidential, they should be able to provide certain information, like the name of the investigator assigned to your case and the process you can take to request records not subject to disclosure.
- Threats and crude language. Cursing, swearing, and threats to get you arrested are also signs that this is not an official call from the TX BON.
If you get a call that has any of these red flags, it is a good idea to report the contact to the TX BON.
What if the call seems official?
It is important to take prompt action if these red flags are not present and you believe the call, or another form of contact, is an official notification of an investigation. An official investigation by the TX BON can result in fines, suspension and even revocation of one’s nursing license. Prompt action can help reduce this risk and better ensure your rights are protected.