Hawai'i State News

Phone scammers targeting licensed professionals, businesses

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Phone scammers impersonating Hawaiʻi state officials are targeting licensed professionals and businesses with false threats of investigation.

The Hawaiʻi Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs reports the imposters have contacted at least two current or former licensees in the medical professionals, a physician and psychologist. The callers claimed they were with the Hawaiʻi Medical Board, stating the Regulated Industries Complaints Office had filed a complaint against the licensees.

The scammers used caller ID spoofing to make it seem like the calls were coming from the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs Professional and Licensing Division.

The state is concerned that the scam calls could be aimed at medical professionals such as nurses, pharmacists and others.


A professional or vocational licensee that is under investigation by the department would first be notified in writing from the Regulated Industries Complaints Office, which is not affiliated with any out-of-state agency or task force. Notices from the agency are sent on official letterhead and include contact information for all of its offices.

The Regulated Industries Complaints Office never requests private or sensitive information via the phone, solicits wire transfers or verbally suspends licenses. Only the Hawaiʻi Medical Board has the authority to suspend a license through formal written action.

The Professional and Licensing Division, through its 52 licensing programs, also does not initiate contact with the public regarding formal investigations. The division’s programs might, however, contact applicants and licensees to check on the status of an application, request additional information, etc.


If you receive a suspicious call, hang up without sharing personal information.

Determine the caller’s legitimacy by contacting the agency using a known, verified phone number (click here) instead of relying on caller ID.

Impersonating a public servant is a criminal offense and will be investigated and prosecuted.


If you have received calls similar to what is described above or are seeking to verify contact from the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs, call your respective licensing program or the Professional and Licensing Division at 808-586-3000.

A list of programs and contact information is available online.

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