Alexandria, La. (KALB)- Scammers are already at work trying to get money or personal information from you, but scamming activity related to COVID-19 is expected to ramp up in the coming weeks. CPR Call Blocker has compiled the top five active scams that people in Louisiana should watch out for as the coronavirus situation unfolds:
1. Fake test kits scam – someone may call claiming to offer free Coronavirus testing kits and will ask you for your personal information and health insurance details. A common version of this scam targets diabetic individuals that are higher risk, where a scam caller will offer both a free Coronavirus test kit and a free diabetic monitor.
2. FDIC scam – scam-callers posing as employees from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation will ask you for sensitive information, such as your social security number and bank account information, over the phone as a precondition to receive federal money. Remember the FDIC would never make unsolicited phone calls asking for personal information and money, and especially would not put pressure on you or threaten you.
3. Charity scam – you may get a call from someone claiming to be from a charitable organisation which is collecting donations for individuals, groups or areas affected by Coronavirus. The caller will ask you to send cash donations in the mail, by wire transfer or by gift card.
4. Healthcare provider scam – scam-callers pretending to work for a healthcare provider will tell you that a relative or friend has been treated for Coronavirus, and then demand immediate payment for treatment before threatening legal action if you don’t pay. Healthcare providers would not contact you this way.
5. Student loan scams – you receive a call to tell you that new measures due to the Coronavirus outbreak will have an effect on your student loan, and that you need to ring a different phone number to find out how the new measures will impact your future payment obligations. If you ring this number, a scammer may ask you for personal information like your social security number and credit card details.
You should never give out personal or financial information over the phone, even if the caller claims to be from your bank. Hang up if you feel like you're being harassed and if you're unsure whether or not a caller is genuine, you can always research the company they claim to be from online.
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