Seniors stay vigilant; criminals are taking advantage of our community. While the world bands together to stop the spread of COVID-19, swindlers are profiting from the pandemic. Scammers are using fear to exploit worried families by promising them cures for the virus. There is no need to panic, but just like everything else, being informed is always the first step.
Here are a few ways you can avoid COVID-19 scams:
- Avoid clicking on links from unknown sources (they could download viruses onto your computer or devices)
- Be wary of emails from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
- To find current and official information about the virus, click here or visit the World Health Organization (WHO)
- Do not open emails from “experts” stating they have information about the virus
- Dismiss online offers for vaccinations
- Ignore offers for COVID-19 curing products (ex. vaccines, pills, potions, lotions, tablets, prescriptions or over-the-counter products) online or in stores
- Do your research first when looking up charities and crowdfunding sites to donate to
- Do not fall for campaigns asking for donations via cash, gift card or through money wires (especially when rushed)
- Do not answer calls from suspicious phone numbers or click on links from texts sent by unknown numbers
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have joined forces to release warning letters to sellers of misleading products. The FTC explains that the accused companies have no evidence to support their claims, while the FDA states that there are no approved or experimental products presently available. Follow the tips listed above, and you are less likely to fall victim to the traps of predators. Stay informed, positive, and calm.