There have been increased reports of scammers trying to use the coronavirus to take advantage of people while they’re distracted. Numerous federal agencies have issued guidance on steps you can to protect yourself, and I would encourage everybody to share these tips with people who may be particularly susceptible to these types of scams:
- Scams can come in the form of emails, text messages, websites and social media attempts. Red flags to look for include requests for money or personal taxpayer information. Scammers may also try tactics, including:
- Asking you to sign over your economic impact payment check to them.
- Asking by phone, email, text or social media for verification of personal and/or banking information saying that the information is needed to receive or speed up their economic impact payment.
- Suggesting that they can get a tax refund or economic impact payment faster by working on your behalf.
- Mailing you a bogus check, perhaps in an odd amount, and then telling the taxpayer to call a number or verify information online in order to cash it.
- Protect your personal information. If someone calls asking for personal information, hang up and contact the agency directly.
- Check any documents and forms for errors.
- If you do find yourself victim to what appears to be a scam, you can report it directly to the federal government here.
As always, our offices are open and ready to help. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to call our office at 202-225-3026. You can also find the latest information here.