ORLANDO, Fla. – In the eighth month of the pandemic, millions of people are still in desperate need of help with over 36.5 million Americans filing for unemployment. But the virus isn’t the only danger that’s looming. Make sure you’re not the next victim of one of these COVID cons.
- Free offers for COVID relief
- Contact tracing emails
- Links to buy or receive free PPE
- Unsolicited loans or grant offers related to COVID-19
The Federal Trade Commission has received more than 79,000 reports of fraud related to COVID-19, resulting in 97 million dollars in fraud loss. These scams typically come as messages from friends or contacts offering you a stimulus check and asking you to click a link. These links might also ask you to fill out a survey or give information. But at the end, there’s no money, and the scammers have had plenty of time to phish for your information. Also, beware of fake COVID contact tracers. Real contact tracers will call by phone, not connect by email. The real deal will never ask for money.
Contact tracing is run by the Department of Health and not independent companies. Many apps still have problems and can send your location and data to third parties. Always be cautious of anything you put on your phone and never give your info to someone you’re not 100% comfortable with.