Scammers looking to capitalize on people’s fear of coronavirus; what to know before answering the phone
LOS ANGELES - They pretend to care about you and your family… then comes the sales pitch.
“For only $159 our highly trained technicians will do a full air duct cleaning and sanitation to make sure the air you breathe is free of bacteria”.
This robocall doesn’t lead to any coronavirus cleaning but it is designed to scare you into coughing up your hard-earned cash. And scammers are working overtime in this pandemic.
“If you are diabetic and using insulin. We can qualify you to get a free diabetic monitor and a complementary testing kit for coronavirus’.
“These scams are praying on the most vulnerable," Alex Quilici is the CEO of Youmail...a developer of robocall blocking software.
"People who fall for the testing scam are probably people who are really worried they might have been exposed to the coronavirus,” Quilici said.
The coronavirus robocall scams come in all forms.
RELATED: CoronavirusNOW.com, FOX launches national hub for COVID-19 news and updates.
“Hello this is a courtesy invitation to work with Amazon from home and make up to $400 a day. No sales or technical experience are needed, work from home you set your own schedule.”
Amazon is not hiring people for $400 a day at all here.
Another scam targets those with student loans. Here is one of their messages.
“Hello this is Brad Lee Jacey with an important message regarding the effects of the Coronavirus outbreak on your student loans. As you may have already heard President Trump invoked his power as Commander in Chief, by declaring a national emergency due to the widespread impact of COVID-19. New measures will include waiving interest on your Federal Student Loans until further notice”
“They talk about interest rates being adjusted because of the coronavirus and you should call in to see all your options. They're all about getting you to press one to learn more,” Quilici said.
He says there are three very simple things you can do to protect yourself from these scams…
-- Get a robocall blocking app on your cell phone
-- let unknown calls go to voicemail, don't answer a number you don't recognize
-- When you have a number you're calling back, research it. Don't just respond to unknown calls.
“It's unfortunate but it's becoming dangerous,” he added.
Typically scammers target the elderly the most.
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