(UNDATED) – While many things are postponed, delayed, or even canceled during this unprecedented time, one thing is not changing – scammers are hard at work, trying to take your hard-earned money.
Fortunately, Indiana State Police in Sellersburg has not seen an increase locally in scamming attempts; however, here are a few real-life examples that have been identified by federal authorities:
- Telephone fraud – criminals call victims pretending to be a clinic or hospital officials, who claim that a relative of the victim has fallen sick with the virus and request payments for medical treatment.
- Phishing – emails claiming to be from national or global health authorities, in hopes of tricking victims to provide personal credentials or payment details, or to open an attachment containing malware.
Authorities advise if you are looking to buy medical supplies online, or receive emails or links offering medical support, be alert to the signs of a potential scam and protect yourself and your money.
- Independently verify the company/individual offering the items before making any purchases.
- Be aware of bogus websites – criminals will often use a web address which looks almost identical to the legitimate one, e.g. ‘abc.org‘ instead of ‘abc.com‘.
- Check online reviews of a company before making a purchase – for example, have there been complaints of other customers not receiving the promised items?
- Be wary if asked to make a payment to a bank account located in a different country than where the company is located.
- If you believe you have been the victim of fraud, alert your bank immediately so the payment can be stopped.
- Do not click on links or open attachments that you were not expecting to receive or come from an unknown sender.
- Be wary of unsolicited emails offering medical equipment or requesting your personal information for medical checks – legitimate health authorities do not usually contact the general public in this manner.