Scammers are constructing schemes related to COVID-19 (coronavirus) to commit fraud. The United States Department of Justice recommends that Americans take the following precautionary measures to protect themselves from known and emerging scams related to COVID-19:
- Independently verify the identity of any company, charity, or individual that contacts you regarding COVID-19.
- Check the websites and email addresses offering information, products, or services related to COVID-19.
- Be wary of unsolicited emails offering information, supplies, or treatment for COVID-19 or requesting your personal information for medical purposes.
- Do not click on links or open email attachments from unknown or unverified sources.
- Make sure the anti-malware and anti-virus software on your computer is operating and up to date.
- Ignore offers for a COVID-19 vaccine, cure, or treatment.
- Check online reviews of any company offering COVID-19 products or supplies.
- Research any charities or crowdfunding sites soliciting donations in connection with COVID-19 before giving any donation.
- Be wary of any business, charity, or individual requesting payments or donations in cash, by wire transfer, gift card, or through the mail.
- Be cautious of “investment opportunities” tied to COVID-19, especially those based on claims that a small company’s products or services can help stop the virus.
If you suspect that you are a victim of a scam or attempted fraud involving COVID-19, contact the National Center for Disaster Fraud Hotline at 866-720-5721 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or report it to the FBI at tips.fbi.gov. If it is a cyber-scam, submit your complaint through https://www.ic3.gov/complaint/splash.aspx.
Status and Revision History
Published on Apr 08, 2020