Better Business Bureau warns of Coronavirus scams

Mar 26, 2020

A warning to be on the lookout as scammers and con artist try to cash in on the Coronavirus outbreak.

The Alabama Securities Commission is advising people not to respond to calls or emails claiming to be from federal or state agency offering COVID-19 related grants, checks or payments.

The ASC says scammers often offer false incentives in exchange for personal financial information.

Garet Smitherman is with the Better Business Bureau. He says the pandemic creates more situations for crooks to take advantage. “There are many opportunities for scammers to perpetrate their plans,” he says. “But taking a step back, researching as much information as possible. But just taking a step back and being in the know, and looking into the situation is the best tips that we have.”

Smitherman explains what to do if you think you’re on the phone with a scammer.

“If you think that you’re being targeted, we certainly suggest that you take a step back. If it’s over the telephone, tell them that you’ll call them back,” he says. “If they’re claiming to be from a certain organization or business, call that group directly to confirm or disconfirm whether or not they’ve been attempting to contact you.”

Smitherman also says it’s important to be aware that this pandemic creates an opportunity for scammers to take advantage.