Coronavirus and Fraud

Be aware that opportunistic criminals are using the coronavirus pandemic to steal people’s money and identities. Here are some of the strategies you should be aware of:

  • ƒ  Outbreak maps. Don’t click on any link that purports to show a map of the COVID-19 outbreak unless you absolutely trust the source. The Johns Hopkins interactive map at https:// is one legitimate source. Some scammers have used bogus online maps to spread malware and capture usernames, passwords, credit card numbers, and other information. Be careful about what you click!
  • ƒ  Email campaigns. Criminals have put a coronavirus spin on email phishing, using infected attachments or downloads to steal information. Remember: The email may look like it is from a legitimate source like a bank, but it’s best to go to the bank website directly or give them a call.
  • ƒ  Charitable giving. Be on the alert for scammers posing as representatives of legitimate charitable organizations. You may also receive an urgent request from someone you know seeking financial help. Make sure to contact the person directly to verify that the request really was from them.
  • ƒ  Testing scams. Finally, officials aren’t likely to knock on your door as part of a coronavirus outreach and response. Instead, it’ll probably be a scammer trying to take advantage of people’s fears by selling them expensive products or otherwise getting their personal information. Don’t let them in the house, and don’t give them information.

    It’s important that we all stay vigilant in these uncertain times. If you have any questions, call
    a local agency or do your research from only legitimate sites on the internet. The Federal Trade Commission has more information on coronavirus- related scams and what you can do.

    Your financial well-being is our priority. We will keep you informed of important developments in the fight against cybersecurity threats.

    In the meantime, we wish you continued health, and we look forward to meeting you in person once more after the outbreak ends.

    Compliments of HC Financial Advisors

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