2022

"The nonstop scam economy is costing us more than just money"


The Washington Post interviewed Dr. Matthew Mimiaga about the mental health impact of telephone and online scams.

Pamela McCarroll doesn’t have the luxury of ignoring phone calls from unknown numbers.

The 30-year old is undergoing treatment for long-term colon cancer in Fairfax County, Va., and never knows whether it could be a doctor, a hospital with test results, or someone trying to schedule an appointment.

Unfortunately, that means she’s fielding up to 20 spam phone calls every day on her mobile phone, adding to her already sky-high levels of stress. Since her diagnosis in August 2019, the number of scam attempts has shot up while the topics have gotten strangely specific, including Medicare or senior benefits.

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Faculty Referenced by this Article

Matthew Mimiaga
Matthew J. Mimiaga
Epidemiology
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Christie Jeon
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Amy Wohl
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Pamina Gorbach
Pamina Gorbach
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Jonathan Jacobs
Jonathan Jacobs
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Su Yong Jung
Su Yon Jung
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Hashibe, Mia
Mia Hashibe
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Sheena G. Sullivan
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Otoniel Martinez-Maza
Otoniel Martinez-Maza
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Bailley, Julia
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Dr. Dvora Joseph Davey
Dvora Joseph Davey

Dr. Joseph Davey is an infectious disease epidemiologist with over 20 years' experience leading research on HIV/STI services for women and children.

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Sung-Jae Lee
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Dr. Paul Hsu
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Roberta Malmgren
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Teresa Ellen Seeman
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Robert Kim-Farley
Robert J. Kim-Farley

Robert J. Kim-Farley, MD, MPH, is a Professor-in-Residence with joint appointments in the Departments of Epidemiology and Community Health Sciences

Community Health Sciences Epidemiology
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Noel Weiss
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Ralph R. Frerichs
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Naomi Greene
Epidemiology
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Frank J. Sorvillo
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Jian Li
Jian Li
Environmental Health Sciences Epidemiology
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Dr. Shira Shafir
Shira Shafir
Community Health Sciences Epidemiology
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Emily Beeler
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Niklas Krause
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Karin B. Michels
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Maral DerSarkissian
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Leeka I. Kheifets
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Peter Katona
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Sander Greenland
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Lisa V. Smith
Epidemiology
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Brian Bradbury
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Roch A. Nianogo
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Paul Simon
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Peter R. Kerndt
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Akihiro Nishi
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Elizabeth Rose Mayeda
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Onyebuchi A. Arah
Epidemiology
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Marissa J. Seamans
Marissa Seamans
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Kamyar Kalantar-Zadeh
Kamyar Kalantar-Zadeh
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Paul Dluzniewski
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Ximena Vergara
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Anne Coleman
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Beate Ritz
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Marjan Javanbakht
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Zuo-Feng Zhang
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Lawrence Ash
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Dr. Liwei Chen
Liwei Chen

Professor in Epidemiology

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Ondine S. von Ehrenstein
Community Health Sciences Epidemiology
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Catherine Carpenter
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Roger Detels
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