Coronavirus Scam: How to Protect Yourself
How it Works
These scams may use emails, texts or social media posts. They may try to look official. But they are just another way to send malware through attachments, or to point you to phony websites that ask for log-in credentials. Their message may promise important information, offer protection products or ask for a donation. Their goal is simply to get your money, your information – or both.
What To Do
- Only open emails from a sender you know and trust. This goes for opening attachments and following links, too. Bad guys can use files and links to install malware on your computer or trick you into giving them information.
- Watch for emails claiming to be from government agencies saying they have information about the virus. For the most up-to-date information about the coronavirus, visit the websites of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the World Health Organization. And, remember, government agencies will not ask you to wire money or share personal information through email.
- Ignore incoming calls and texts from numbers you do not recognize. If you do answer, and it sounds like a scam, hang up immediately. Don’t try to outsmart the bad guy by giving out wrong information. Just hang up.
- Don't share personal information, like passwords, credit card numbers, or bank account information over the phone, in an email or in a text. And do not send money to someone you do not really know.
- If you receive a suspicious text message, alert your cellphone provider.
- Regularly check your accounts and report any suspicious or fraudulent activity immediately.
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