SCARS™ Scam Basics: Don’t Click Links In Unknown Text Messages! Ever!
Don’t Click Links In Unsolicited Text Messages
You might be seeing text messages promising money – maybe the economic impact payments, loans for small businesses, or an offer for money you can get. In fact, you may have recently seen a WhatsApp text message in Spanish that advertised money for people quarantined at home. If you’ve spotted messages like this, we hope you have ignored and deleted them.
These text messages going around could lead you to a scam or a hacker or to malware and viruses, but not to anything helpful.
It’s important to remember that scammers will go to any length to make their message seem real.
This particular text had the logo of the Executive Office of the President of the U.S. – a typical scammer tactic to make a message look affiliated with the government. It also had a list of people who could supposedly apply for the government grant – basically anyone – and had misspellings and cut off sentences.
Not all scammers have bad grammar or spelling – but it’s a good tip-off to a scam when you see them. Also, when it comes to economic impact payments and other pandemic recovery help, the government is not reaching out via text, phone, email, or messages to your social media. If you spot one: pretty likely it’s a scam.
So, if you get text messages claiming to be related to the government’s help for people affected by the Coronavirus:
- Do not click on any links. Clicking could expose you to scams, download malware, or get your phone number added to lists that are then sold to other bad actors.
- Delete those text messages immediately and if possible block that number from contacting you again.
- If you have questions about the federal government’s economic impact payment, go to irs.gov/coronavirus.
Report any suspicious text message to:
- The FTC at ftc.gov/complaint. Your report matters. It helps stop scams and alert people about them
- The FBI at www.IC3.gov
- And the SCARS|CDN Cybercrime Data Network at www.Anyscam.com
TAGS: SCARS, Important Article, Information About Scams, Anti-Scam, Scams, Scammers, Fraudsters, Cybercrime, Crybercriminals, Scam Victims, Text Messages, Scam Messages, Unknown Texts, Links In Text Messages
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FAQ: How Do You Properly Report Scammers?
It is essential that law enforcement knows about scams & scammers, even though there is nothing (in most cases) that they can do.
Always report scams involving money lost or where you received money to:
- Local Police – ask them to take an “informational” police report – say you need it for your insurance
- U.S. State Police (if you live in the U.S.) – they will take the matter more seriously and provide you with more help than local police
- Your National Police or FBI « www.IC3.gov »
- The SCARS|CDN™ Cybercriminal Data Network – Worldwide Reporting Network on « www.Anyscam.com »
This helps your government understand the problem, and allows law enforcement to add scammers on watch lists worldwide.
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To learn more about SCARS visit « www.AgainstScams.org »
Please be sure to report all scammers
on « www.Anyscam.com »
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