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Crime Scam Alert: Calls, Emails, or Texts About Government Stimulus Checks Are Bogus

12:31  01 april  2020
12:31  01 april  2020 Source:   mentalfloss.com

COVID-19 Scams Are Everywhere Right Now. Here's How to Protect Yourself

  COVID-19 Scams Are Everywhere Right Now. Here's How to Protect Yourself Scammers are using the coronavirus outbreak to try to take advantage of peopleUnfortunately, the spammers and scammers of the world are using the situation to take advantage of people, many of whom may be more vulnerable to their nefarious efforts than usual during these uncertain times. A handful of government agencies and other groups are stepping in to fight off the scammers. But there are still some steps you can take to avoid getting duped.

Government stimulus checks are on the way, but the IRS and Treasury Department won't be texting or calling you about them. While no action or effort is needed on the part of citizens, some people might receive calls , emails , or texts prompting them to offer additional information.

These checks are still weeks away from clearing, but that hasn’t stopped scammers Here’s why you should think twice before opening any emails or texts about your incoming windfall. As for the fake texts and messages, these scams are primarily sent via email , text messages and WhatsApp alerts .

The federal government is currently in the process of distributing stimulus checks to taxpayers as part of a $2 trillion effort to bolster the economy in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. While no action or effort is needed on the part of citizens, some people might receive calls, emails, or texts prompting them to offer additional information.

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Naturally, it’s a scam. According to Business Insider, the Treasury Department is cautioning taxpayers that any entity purporting to be affiliated with the government and asking for their personal data for the purposes of issuing the stimulus check is fraudulent.

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  Sens. Markey and Thune want a crackdown on coronavirus robocall scams The senators send letters to the FCC and Justice Department urging them to do more to stop scams targeting elderly people during the pandemic.In their letters to FCC Chairman Ajit Pai and US Attorney General William Barr, the senators referenced the Washington Post in describing scams, which maliciously offer fake COVID-19 testing kits or nonexistent medical equipment.

The federal government won’t ask Americans to confirm personal or banking details by email , phone or text message, nor demand a “processing fee” to The office advises people to not click on links in email or text messages about stimulus checks , and to avoid providing personal information to

Never respond to phone calls , emails , or text messages claiming to be from the IRS. It's impossible to catalog all the perpetrators but most scams are the same old song, slightly different verse. Scam Alerts editor Mark Huffman says it's trite but true – if a deal sounds too good to be true, it probably is .

On their website, the department states that any solicitation for information or offer to hasten delivery of the check in exchange for a fee is not coming from the government, which usually communicates via the United States Postal Service. Instead, it would be an attempt to steal your private banking, credit card, or other information.

It’s also possible some scammers are mailing out bogus stimulus checks in an effort to prompt recipients to call and offer private information. Since the checks will take weeks to arrive, you should eye such correspondence with suspicion.

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Many stimulus checks will be remitted via direct deposit if the IRS has that information on file from a resident’s 2018 or 2019 tax returns. If not, the Treasury will soon have a method to enter that information online. More details are expected in the coming days.

For the moment, the one beneficial online resource regarding stimulus checks is an online calculator that can help determine the amount you can expect to receive. No private information is required.

[h/t Business Insider]

Coronavirus scam: Beware of fraud with phishing emails .
© Provided by Adorable How to protect yourself against current phishing emails that are exploiting the corona virus crisis. fraudsters use the corona virus crisis to get sensitive data with phishing emails. How to protect yourself. If you check your e-mails, you should currently be particularly careful and suspicious of .

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