Scammers Taking Advantage of COVID-19

October 8, 2020

© Svanhorn4245 | Dreamstime

Even during a pandemic, scammers find ways to steal money and information from victims. Making things a bit trickier in this situation is all the misinformation circulating on the Internet. That has led many to impersonate government Contact Tracers.  When someone tests positive for COVID-19, public health officials will question the person on who they may have come in contact with so that others can get tested and self-isolate to prevent the spread of the virus. So if you revive a phone call, text or mail from someone wanting some personal information, you need to be on guard.  They must be able to provide their name, agency, and a valid phone number.  Contact tracers will ask for your name, address, date of birth, your whereabouts on certain dates and question you about any symptoms. They will never ask for payment or financial information, Medicare or insurance policy number, social security number or immigration status. Robocall scams offering COVID-19 treatment or testing or financial assistance are on the rise too. If you get a call like this, do not press any buttons and hang up. Then, report the call to the FTC at donotcall.gov. Scammers have adapted the "smishing" scam too, where you receive a text or email about health official attempting to reach you about COVID-19 and a link to enter your login credentials. The link is not legitimate and you have provided login information to scammers. Be on the defensive on this one too. A fake login page usually contains an unusual URL, non-functioning links or buttons, and spelling mistakes in the instructions. Never click on the links provided in an email from unknowns senders. Instead, open up your browser and go to the website directly. Always think twice about whether a request for your personal information is appropriate. 

SOURCE: Lifehacker

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