Thieves Are Getting Creative With COVID-19 Scams.
Thieves get creative with different scams to gain access to your checking account and personal information during the COVID-19 pandemic. Here are some of the reported schemes:
Mandatory online COVID-19 Test.
Individuals posing as workers from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services or other federal departments use text messages to instruct you to click on a link to complete a mandatory online COVID-19 test. There is no way of conducting a COVID-19 test online currently.
You’ve been in contact with COVID-19.
This scam sends an e-mail to warn you that you came into contact with a colleague/friend/family member who has COVID-19. The e-mail instructs you to download and print an Excel spreadsheet and bring it to the nearest COVID-19 testing site. When you open the spreadsheet, it says they need to enable the content to view the spreadsheet’s details. Malicious macros activate when you click on the Enable Content button, infecting your computer.
SBA loan applications.
Fraudulent e-mails were sent out as correspondence from the U.S. Small Business Administration telling you that you could apply for a small business disaster assistance grant. You are instructed to sign an attached document and upload it to the SBA’s website. Attachment downloads and a remote access trojan is installed on your computer or other electronic device.
Online fraud and schemes wouldn’t be complete without coronavirus-themed malware. There are multiple variants of a master boot record (MBR) locker, including one called coronavirus.bat. The malware replaces the MBR of a computer and prevents the operating system from starting and displays a ransom note or other message.
Fake pop-up testing sites.
Hands down the most brazen attempt to steal personal information are pop-up COVID-19 testing sites. The thieves are saying that a person can be tested for COVID-19 for a $240 fee. They will pocket the cash and use your personal information gathered to make fraudulent Medicare and Medicaid claims.
Identity theft places a burden on its victims and is a frustrating process. Here are some great resources to check out! To stay update to date on important information sign up for our newsletters. You can also Follow CD Tax on Facebook!