Beware of Scams Regarding the Coronavirus
The US attorney general is warning us about these coronavirus scams:
- Individuals and businesses selling fake cures for COVID-19 online and engaging in other forms of fraud.
- Phishing emails from entities posing as the World Health Organization or the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
- Malicious websites and apps that appear to share coronavirus-related information to gain and lock access to your devices until payment is received.
- Seeking donations fraudulently for illegitimate or non-existent charitable organizations.
- Medical providers obtaining patient information for COVID-19 testing and then using that information to fraudulently bill for other tests and procedures.
Some specific examples:
- Many victims say they paid for face masks online, never got them and could no longer contact the seller. One victim says they lost $400 because of that scam.
- Others say they paid for but never received disinfectant wipes.
- Scammers are reportedly also trying to get personal information for fictitious things like coronavirus disability or offers for COVID-19 compensation.
- The Department of Health doesn’t do “at home” tests or sell testing kits.
- People on the phone claiming to be affiliated with power companies. In the call, the potential scammer will say “due to this pandemic you are being reimbursed for your extra usage of electricity (due to being home more),” according to the police in Centerville, MD, “while power companies are doing what they can to soften the blow for the communities they serve, they will not be calling to request this information from you.”