As with any major events, fraudsters are always looking to capitalize on misfortunes. Here are some tips from our cyber security consultants to protect yourself:
- Don’t respond to texts and emails about stimulus checks. The details are still being worked out. Anyone who tells you they can get you the money now is a scammer.
- Don’t click on links from sources you don’t know. They could infect your device with malware or viruses.
- Watch for emails claiming to be from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) or experts saying they have new information. For the most up-to-date information about the Coronavirus, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO).
- Do your homework when it comes to donations, whether through charities or crowdfunding sites. If someone wants donations in cash, by gift card, or by wire, don’t do it.
- Hang up on robocalls. These calls are being used to pitch everything from fake Coronavirus treatments to work-at-home schemes. The recording might say that pressing a number will let you speak to a live operator or remove you from their call list, but it may lead to more calls.
- Ignore online offers for vaccinations and home test kits. Scammers are trying to get you to buy products that aren’t proven to treat, prevent or test for the Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). At this time, there also are no FDA-authorized home test kits for the Coronavirus. Visit the FDA to learn more.
- Fact-check information. During hectic times tons of unverified information is disseminated, by scammers or well-meaning people. Before you pass on any messages, consult trusted sources.
- Know who you’re buying from. Online sellers may claim to have in-demand products, like cleaning, household, and health and medical supplies when, in fact, they don’t.