TALLAHASSEE (CBSMiami) – As the coronavirus continues to spread, new scams are emerging that target people’s concerns.
Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody said the scams run the gambit from text messages and phone calls to imposters posing as health workers offering free COVID-19 tests.
Several South Florida law enforcement agencies have issued alerts about people dressed in white lab coats and masks impersonating Centers for Disease Control workers. The imposters are knocking on doors and offering free COVID-19 tests. The CDC is not sending people door-to-door to test for COVID-19. If a CDC impersonator shows up at your door, close it and call 911.
The U. S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General is reporting a scam involving fraudsters calling older Americans and offering to mail them free COVID-19 test kits. The scammers claim all they need is their Medicare number. Never provide health or personal information in an unsolicited phone call.
“Sadly, scammers never stop trying to make a dishonest dollar—not even amid a pandemic. If you receive an unsolicited text message, email, phone call or any other communication claiming a cash payment, government benefit or other COVID-19 related offer, be very suspicious,” said Moody in a statement.
Over the weekend, reports emerged of text messages asking people to click on a link to claim a $1,000 payment, apparently connected to a COVID-19 federal stimulus package. The link most likely contained malware.
Moody said Floridians need to be on the lookout for scams and never give out personal or financial information to solicitors.
The bottom line is if an offer looks too good to be true then it is probably a scam.