Unfortunately, crises like this often bring out scam artists hoping to take advantage of and prey on people’s fears and concerns. The Attorneys General office enforces consumer protection laws that prohibit scams. The Attorneys General also enforces statutes prohibiting price gouging. Price gouging refers to sellers trying to take unfair advantage of consumers during an emergency or disaster by greatly increasing prices for essential consumer goods and services.
Below are some tips on how to avoid scams and to access additional information from federal agencies.
While vaccination details are getting worked out, here's what you can be sure of:
• You can't pay to put your name on a list to get the vaccine. That's a scam!
• You can't pay to get early access to the vaccine. That's a scam!
• Nobody legit will call about the vaccine and ask for your Social Security, bank account, or credit card number. That's a scam!
Other things to keep top-of-mind:
• Don’t respond to texts, emails, or calls about checks from the government. Government agencies, including Independent Federal Credit Union, will never solicit personal information in a text, email, or over the phone.
• Ignore offers for vaccinations and miracle treatments or cures. Scammers are selling products to treat or prevent COVID-19 without proof that they work.
• Be wary of ads for test kits. Most test kits being advertised have not been approved by the FDA, and aren’t necessarily accurate.
• Hang up on robocalls. Scammers are using illegal robocalls to pitch everything from low-priced health insurance, computer security risks, and work-at-home schemes.
• Beware of fraudulent charities or solicitations.
• Don't trust anyone offering vaccinations or other treatments to you over the phone or email.
• Do NOT click on links from sources you don't know! Many scammers have become very savvy at emulating the identity and branding of retail stores and charities. Click...and they've got you!
Ignore any vaccine offers that say different from what you know, or ask for personal or financial information.
Download this reminder poster "Keep Calm and Avoid COVID-19 Scams" with links to help keep your safety top-of-mind.
You can read more about COVID-19 Scam protection in other Independent News here.