Scammers seem to have caught on to the fact that nobody reads their emails anymore & have moved more aggressively into texting scams! Every so often we get a handful of calls about patients calling clinics concerned that the clinic is texting these scams. The only option you have is to educate your patients as to why it appears the way it does & hopefully it will make sense to them & help them stay safe!
The Texting Scenario:
In order to send out texts for free, we use a service called email-to-text that almost all cell phone providers have. We are not alone in this as we regularly get text message from 4-5 companies we do business with. This is why you have to get the cell phone provider from the patient when you are going to use it for texting reminders, because we need to know which email-to-text server to send to.
So, this is the type of thing most of your patients are experiencing (screenshot below of an actual patient). We replaced some of the information to protect privacy, but generally this is what they are experiencing. It looks like the reminder & CRA scam are coming through the same place, but they are not! The email-to-text server sends out for TELUS using 999-999-9999 (I think a lot of the providers do the same thing) – so everyone who sends through that process will appear to come from the same place, when really, they are just coming through the same email-to-text server! We understand the patient’s confusion, but typically if you explain how it works to them they will understand. It may be worth explaining to patients ahead of time (like when you take their cell info to send reminders to begin with) or just waiting until you have patients ask.
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