May 18, 2020

COVID-19 Opens Door to New Scams

This article originally appeared in PARJustListed.

Like many other situations, scammers have found ways to utilize the coronavirus as a way to gain access to people’s sensitive information and money. It’s important to be aware of the various ways that scammers are using to exploit individuals. They include:

 

  • False exposure: In some areas, phone calls have been made alleging that the caller is from “the health department,” and that the person may have been exposed to the virus. They then follow up with selling either a vaccine kit or an at-home testing kit.  At this point in time, there are no legitimate vaccines for COVID-19.
  • Phishing emails: The usual way that scammers get valuable personal information is via fake emails or phishing emails to gain access to someone’s computer. While this is a risk at any time, the risk is compounded by the coronavirus pandemic and the fact that countless real estate transactions have been delayed or switched to remote communications.  This creates an additional risk as clients might be expecting an email with instructions for online banking transactions.