The United States Treasury Department announced this week it could soon start issuing relief checks to American families as soon as next month, to offset lost income from the coronavirus.
Scammers wasted no time in taking advantage of this news! BBB is already getting reports on BBB Scam Tracker (BBB.org/ScamTracker) about government imposters calling about the checks.
If you receive a message or see a social media post claiming to be from the government, and that you qualify for a special COVID-19 grant, BEWARE!
That link may send you to what seems to be an official government website, and will ask you to enter your personal information and/or banking details.
Some reports we’re seeing, are scammers claiming that they will be able to deposit $1,000 or more directly into your bank account. THIS IS A SCAM!
Tips to Spot a COVID-19 Grant Scam:
Remember: Government agencies do not communicate through social media avenues like Facebook. And be aware of unsolicited messages.
Do NOT pay any money for a ‘free’ government grant: If you have to pay money to claim a ‘free’ grant, it is not really free. A real government agency will not ask you to pay an advanced processing fee. The only official list of all U.S. federal grant-making agencies is Grants.gov.
Do your research: See if that government agency or organization actually exists. Find their contact info and call them to make sure it’s legitimate.