Beware of COVID-19 scams

Posted on 03/23/2020 by Austin Chamber of Commerce

From the office of U.S. Rep. Michael McCaul:

As Texas comes together to battle the Coronavirus, there are some who have seized the opportunity to prey on American consumers.

Individuals are posing as local or federal government officials on phone calls and text messages—asking victims for personal information, and at times, access to bank funds. It is unacceptable these criminals are trying to take advantage of the American people during such a vulnerable time.

To help individuals protect themselves against these criminals, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has released information on current Coronavirus scam campaigns, which can be found here. The FCC also offers the below tips:

  • Do not respond to calls or texts from unknown numbers, or any others that appear suspicious.
  • Never share your personal or financial information via email, text messages, or over the phone.
  • Be cautious if you’re being pressured to share any information or make a payment immediately.
  • Scammers often spoof phone numbers to trick you into answering or responding. Remember that government agencies will never call you to ask for personal information or money.
  • Do not click any links in a text message. If a friend sends you a text with a suspicious link that seems out of character, call them to make sure they weren't hacked.
  • Always check on a charity (for example, by calling or looking at its actual website) before donating.

For more information about scam calls and texts, visit the FCC Consumer Help Center and the FCC Scam Glossary. You can also file a complaint about such scams at fcc.gov/complaints.



Related Categories: COVID-19 resources, For individuals