Cybersecurity expert warns of coronavirus-related scams - FOX34 Lubbock

Cybersecurity expert warns of coronavirus-related scams

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LUBBOCK, Texas -

 It is a time of uncertainty for many Americans, and scammers are taking advantage, using concerns over the coronavirus to steal personal information.

The Federal Trade Commission reports many of these scammers are posing as government agents, businesses and charities.

"Now you have folks that have, they're feeling a little bit more secluded, they're a little more desperate, their financial situation is uncertain, they're feeling very isolated, they're even more susceptible to scams," Terrence McGraw, president of PC Matic Federal, said.

Residents could receive emails and phone calls from people pretending to be with the IRS, concerning their government stimulus checks.

"They'll say, 'Hey, we don't think we have your records updated, we want to validate and make sure you can receive your stimulus check,' etc. So they'll use social engineering to try to convince people to provide that information," McGraw said.

The IRS will not call anyone, or initiate contact electronically to request personal or financial information. You can visit irs.gov to validate your information.

McGraw said during this time, you should be "very suspect" if someone calls you requesting personal info or texts you hyperlinks.

If you receive an email, verify that the person is who they say they are, or with the company they claim to represent.

"If you're asked to go validate documents or go to websites, I would just not click on them at all," McGraw said. "If you're asked to go somewhere, just type it in to the web browser yourself."

If you are working from home and have a laptop, use that rather than a personal one. You should ensure your computer has a good antivirus and a solid VPN.

If you suspect fraud, report it to local police or you can also report it to the FTC.

 

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