Scammers are taking advantage of reports of pending government assistance to people during the COVID-19 outbreak.
A news release from the Federal Trade Commission’s Jennifer Leach, associate director of consumer and business education, states that scammers are trying to get personal IDs in bogus calls to homes.
The news release states: “As the Coronavirus takes a growing toll on people’s pocketbooks, there are reports that the government will soon be sending money by check or direct deposit to each of us. The details are still being worked out, but there are a few really important things to know, no matter what this looks like.”
- The government will not ask you to pay anything up front to get this money. No fees. No charges. No nothing.
- The government will not call to ask for your Social Security number, bank account, or credit card number. Anyone who does is a scammer.
- These reports of checks aren’t yet a reality. Anyone who tells you they can get you the money now is a scammer.
“Normally we’d wait to know what the payment plan looks like before we put out a message like this. But these aren’t normal times. And we predict that the scammers are gearing up to take advantage of this,” the news release states.
“So, remember: no matter what this payment winds up being, only scammers will ask you to pay to get it. If you spot one of these scams, please tell the Federal Trade Commission: www.ftc.gov/complaint. We’re doing our best to stop these scammers in their tracks, and your report will help.