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Beware of Scams

A small traffic cone reading 'Caution' on a computer keyboardWe all have been spending more time on our phones and computers these days. And, more and more stories are coming to light about scammers trying to capitalize on people's vulnerabilities during this pandemic. The individuals you support may be more vulnerable to being taken advantage of during this time and may require some support and reminders about how to avoid scams.

The Federal Trade Commission has posted new tips to avoid coronavirus scams. These include:

  1. Don’t respond to texts, emails or calls about checks from the government The details about how the checks will be sent out are still being determined and at this point, no one will reach out to you. 
  2. Ignore online offers for vaccinations and home test kits. There are no products proven to treat or prevent COVID-19 at this time.
  3. Hang up on robocalls. Scammers are using illegal robocalls to pitch everything from low-priced health insurance to work-at-home schemes.
  4. Watch for emails claiming to be from the CDC or WHO. Use trusted sites like coronavirus.govusa.gov/coronavirus and the PA Department of Health to get the latest official information about Coronavirus. And don’t click on links from sources you do not know.
  5. Do your homework when it comes to donations. Never donate in cash, by gift card, or by wiring money.

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's (CFPB) website has a variety of resources including these Scam reminder placemats that would make great, shareable resources. The CFPB periodically updates their blog with new warnings about specific, coronavirus-related scams.

Are there other strategies or recommendations that have been effective for the participants you support? If so, let us know! Please send any suggestions or questions related to this email or requests for additional resources to RA-basprovidersupprt@pa.gov