COVID-19 Scams & Cybersecurity
Unfortunately, reports of scammers taking advantage of society’s coronavirus fears are on the rise. Trust your instincts and don’t let it happen to you – see the tips below and read more from the FTC here:
- Hang up on robocalls. Scammers are using robocalls to pitch everything from fake coronavirus treatments to work-at-home schemes. The recording might say that pressing a number will let you speak to a live operator or remove you from their call list – hang up instead.
- Fact-check information. Scammers, and sometimes well-meaning people, share information that hasn’t been verified. Before you pass on any messages, check trusted sources such as federal, state, and local government agencies.
- Know who you’re buying from. Online sellers may claim to have in-demand products like cleaning, household, and health and medical supplies when, in fact, they don’t. Be aware that sellers of unapproved and misbranded products are claiming they can treat or prevent the virus.
- Be aware that email phishing scams are on the rise. You may receive emails related to the coronavirus that look real but are intended to install malware if you click a link or open attachments. Keep an eye out for misspellings, odd domain names, unknown senders, and requests for personal information. Delete any suspicious emails.
- Don’t respond to suspicious texts and emails about checks from the government.
- Don’t click on links from sources you don’t know.
- Watch for emails claiming to be from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) or experts saying they have information about the virus. For the most up-to-date information about the coronavirus, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO). Don’t click on any links or attachments – instead, try retyping the website address in a browser window.
- Ignore offers online or from telemarketers for "coronavirus vaccinations."
- Do your homework when it comes to donations, whether through charities or crowdfunding sites. Don’t let anyone rush you into making a donation. If someone wants donations in cash, by gift card, or by wiring money, don’t do it.
If you are aware of any coronavirus scams, contact the Northbrook Police non-emergency line at 847-564-2060.