Coronavirus scam: Beware of COVID-19 text message scam
During the Global pandemic we are all currently weathering has brought out the best in many of us, with acts of neighborly love and compassion surfacing daily, there are still those who will try to exploit uncertain times for their own benefit.
Scammers are pretending to be government agencies providing information on COVID-19 through text messages and emails ‘phishing’ for your information.
“These contain malicious links and attachments designed to steal your personal and financial information.”
If you get a text message saying you’ve come into contact with someone who’s tested positive for Covid-19, don’t click the link.
The Thomaston Police Department in Maine is among authorities warning about this particular scam, sharing a photo of a similar text in a Facebook post.
Authorities warn this could be a phishing scam that attempts to get personal information from unsuspecting victims.
“The virus is not the only invisible enemy,” Officials say. “Be vigilant against all threats!”
The text messages that claim to be from a governmental agency trying to get you to click a link to take an “online coronavirus test.” Consumer advocates say this is a way to get malware downloaded on your electronic devices.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation in San Diego warned last month that scammers were sending text messages promising money or financial rewards through Covid-19 stimulus packages.
The agency shared on Twitter what appeared to be a text message offering “$110 goodies from Costco.” The message said the offer was the retailer’s “stimulus package for Costco loyal customers.”
The message appeared to contain a link to fill out a survey, which the FBI said contained “malware, ransomware or other fraudulent methods to steal personal and financial information.”
Tips to help you protect yourself from any scams, including coronavirus scams:
- Make sure you don’t open attachments or click on links in text messages or emails from sources you don’t recognize.
- Don’t respond to calls or messages from unknown or suspicious numbers.
- 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.
- Hang up on robocalls without saying a word or pressing any buttons. If you respond by pressing a number.
- Ignore online offers for vaccinations and home test kits
If you think you’ve been a victim of a coronavirus scam, contact local law enforcement immediately.