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The original item was published from 4/21/2020 4:47:42 PM to 4/21/2020 4:48:56 PM.
General Press Releases
Posted on: April 21, 2020
[ARCHIVED] Citizens Reminded to Guard Against Coronavirus Scams
Date Issued: April 21, 2020
Unfortunately, criminals prey on people in moments of crisis when they are most vulnerable. It is important for citizens to be aware of potential coronavirus-related scams. If in doubt, check it out. While many people are working from home, these criminals are working to steal your money and personal information. To help combat this issue, the United States Department of Justice has enacted the National Center for Disaster Fraud Hotline to help. Call 1-866-720-5721 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to report COVID-19 fraud. For more information, visit their website at www.justice.gov/coronavirus. Additional information regarding COVID-19 scams can be found on the FTC website: www.ftc.gov/coronavirus.
There have been reports that scammers are pretending to be the government, contacting people by robocall, text message, email, and other outreach. These scammers say they can get people financial help during the COVID-19 pandemic, and then ask for money or personal information, like your Social Security, bank account information, or credit card number. This is a SCAM.
Don’t trust anyone who offers financial help and then asks for money or personal information. Federal and local disaster workers do not solicit or accept money. The Department of Homeland Security, FEMA, U.S. Health and Human Services, and the Centers for Disease Control staff never charge for disaster assistance.
WHAT YOU CAN DO
WHEN IN DOUBT, CHECK IT OUT
Ultimately, it is up to citizens to keep themselves safe from criminals and scammers. Following are additional resources to check out.
- Don’t respond to texts, emails or calls about checks from the government. If you filed tax returns in 2018, then the check will simply be sent to you.
- Ignore online offers for vaccinations and home test kits. There are no products proven to treat or prevent COVID-19 at this time.
- Hang up on robocalls. Scammers are using illegal robocalls, sometimes with caller ID that says they're a real government agency or health provider, to pitch everything from low-priced health insurance to work-at-home schemes.
- Watch for emails claiming to be from the CDC or WHO. Use sites like coronavirus.gov to get the latest COVID-19 information. And don’t click on links from sources you don’t know.
- Fraudulent donations. Never donate in cash, by gift card, or by wiring money.
Law Enforcement Actions
Scam Calls About the Coronavirus
Contact: Larry McIntyre
Village of Westmont
Communications Director/Public Information Officer