May 12, 2020
Scammers follow the headlines, so now they focus on ways to use the COVID-19 pandemic to their advantage.
“Since the pandemic began, fraud has increased by more than 350 percent,” said Frank Abagnale, author of the book. “Scam Me If You Can” and an internationally respected security expert. “[The scammers] just look at this as a new way to make money. They have a totally new audience to do it. And this is why I emphasize to people that now more than ever you just have to be careful.
“Fraudsters prey on two things: greed and fear. And now, they are cashing in on people’s fears,” said Ethan Via, Special Supervisory Agent for the FBI in Seattle.
Since the beginning of the year, Washington residents have reported losing more than $ 300,000 to fraud related to the corona virus through the FBI Internet Crime Complaints Center (IC3), Via told me. Nationally, losses are currently more than $ 64 million.
“Before you respond to anything, before clicking on any link, take a deep breath and think about it. Is this too good to be true?”
Remember, no government agency will contact you via text, email, phone call or social media. That’s how scammers who pretend together with government agents target their victims.
Further info: Scammers Cash-In at COVID-19: How to Protect Yourself