Whenever something terrible happens in our world, the con artists come out in droves to take advantage of that fact.
The scams they create often target the most vulnerable people in our communities. Older adults are usually the primary mark because they have money available and want to protect their interests.
What Coronavirus Scams Are Out There Today?
Scammers sent texts or make calls offering to send testing kits to gather credit card or bank account information. Some try to make it seem as if they are affiliated with Medicare or Medicaid.
Some con artists try to take advantage of the hope people have for a cure. They’ll peddle fake vaccines, medication, or devices that prevent or treat COVID-19. The idea is that a shortage may happen in the future, making now the best time to invest.
When the federal government issued stimulus funds to most Americans, that legislation included grants and low-interest loans. Scammers have contacted families to ask about this money to verify its deposit by requesting bank account verification.
Some scammers pretend to be a charitable organization to peddle the care and compassion that people have for those in need. Before donating to any COVID-19 relief effort, please verify that organization’s credentials. You can also route your funds through known charities to avoid this problem altogether.
A few scammers call older adults to offer low-cost life insurance policies or healthcare addendums to protect against COVID-19. They’ll often talk about how free testing kits are part of the package.
You’ll find lots of robocalls hitting cell phones right now that pose as an official contact with the Social Security Administration. These messages say that individual benefits will decrease or stop because of COVID-19 unless a payment or personal information gets sent. The reality of these scams is that they try to be believable, but the lies are transparent if you know where to look.