Ohio Department of Commerce Warns of Obituary Phone Scams

COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio Department of Commerce has issued a consumer alert to Ohio families using cemetery and funeral services.

Scammers are using recent obituaries to find information about the deceased person’s family. Scammers then contact the family pretending to be a representative from the funeral home or cemetery to obtain their financial information.

“It’s an awful scam that targets families when they’re most vulnerable after losing a loved one,” said Daphne Hawk, superintendent of the Division of Real Estate and Professional Licensing, which registers more than 4,100 cemeteries. “We want Ohio cemeteries and funeral homes to be aware of this potential scam and let the families they serve know your process. We have resources on how to handle such scams and what to do if you understandably fall for one, too. All that information is in our alert.”

If an incoming phone call sounds suspicious, consumers are encouraged to hang up and call the cemetery or funeral home directly for confirmation.

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.