2021 tax season filing

One of the first changes in 2020 due to COVID-19 was the delay in the regular income tax filing date. Soon after that, millions of out-of-work Americans began to receive enhanced unemployment benefits and special small business loans. Soon after that, cybercriminals began to steal those benefits. The Department of Labor estimates that unemployment fraud […]

Missing Stimulus check

The IRS and Treasury Department began distributing stimulus payments the last week of 2020. Direct Deposits, paper checks and debit cards will be sent out to some Americans throughout January. No action is required by anyone to receive their stimulus payment.   Some Americans say they are missing their stimulus payment, while others claim their money was deposited […]

Image of covid 19 stimulus payment relief

*Updated as of 1/5/2021 More stimulus payments are on the way. Scammers are aware, too, which means another round of stimulus payment-related scams.   Remember, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) will not text, email or call anyone about a stimulus payment. If someone receives an unsolicited message from someone claiming to be with the IRS, it is probably a scam. Consumers should contact the IRS directly to verify before they respond.  Offers that require people to pay to receive a stimulus […]

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warns consumers that while a vaccine is closer to distribution, so are COVID-19 vaccine scams.  The FDA fears misleading products could cause Americans to delay or stop appropriate medical treatment, leading to life-threatening harm.  There is also a fear that the COVID-19 vaccine scams could lead to many people having their personally identifiable information (PII) and personal health […]

The 2020 COVID-19 holiday season is upon us. This year, consumers should be on the lookout for job scams, giving scams, grandparent scams and online shopping scams, to name a few.   If anyone comes across an unknown message regarding the COVID-19 holiday season, they should ignore it and go directly back to the source to confirm the message’s legitimacy.  People should take steps to protect their personal […]

Scammers are looking to take advantage of consumers that need money due to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic with a credit line scam.  The scam tries to trick consumers with fake phone calls that look like they are from legitimate banks offering credit lines with low interest rates. Ultimately, scammers are looking to steal sensitive personal information or financial […]

Quick Response Codes, or QR Codes, continue to generally grow in popularity, especially due to COVID-19. Hackers are aware and are looking to possibly attack consumers with the digital barcodes.  There have been attacks in India and Brussels in 2020. Malwarebytes reports the U.S. saw QR Code scams and attacks in 2019.    To reduce their chance of a compromise, QR Code users should be […]

Image of IRS homepage for non-filers

This article has been updated as of November 2, 2020 Update 11/2/20 – According to the IRS, anyone who does not usually file a tax return, or did not file a tax return in 2018 or 2019, might not know if they qualify for an economic impact payment. Nearly nine million people that fall into this category will […]

The Federal Trade Commission reports that people who lost money to scams that started on social media has more than tripled in 2020, with a significant increase in the second quarter of the year.  The increase in social media scams fits the overall 2020 trend of more phishing scams on channels besides email.  Some recent social media scams include romance scams, fake advertisements, […]

With some businesses opening back up after temporarily closing due to the COVID-19 pandemic, scammers are trying to capitalize using online job scams to steal people’s personal information. Recently, Scripps Health found hackers exploiting job seekers through phishing emails with Scripps Health-themed “lures.” Scripps sent the following email to warn their community members: ATA Engineering, […]