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Scammers Don't Take A Break During COVID-19 Crisis

Joint Base San Antonio

As incredible as it sounds, scammers are trying to rip off the public using scare tactics concerning the coronavirus.

State Division of Trade and Consumer Protection administrator Lara Sutherlin says while many are stuck at home, the government has been offering financial resources to get us through the crisis. She recommends people pay close attention to the process of providing you relief. Unemployment insurance is a prime example..

"(Department of Workforce Development) has detected almost 350 instances of identity theft or fraud. So be careful about pop-ups, phishing emails explaining that government program..."

Sutherlin says student loans are also targeted. She says under the CARES Act, the payments on federal loans were postponed without penalty..

"There are scammers out there telling you you need to pay a fee to get into this program. That you need to apply and give personal identifying information to get into the program. Those are scams. "

Among other scams reported: testing charges for COVID-19 and costs for contract tracing. Scams surrounding facemask and personal protective gear, charity scams and pet scams.

Sutherlin says scammers ask people if they would like a pet and for a fee one will be delivered to them. No pet is delivered and the loss is in the hundreds of dollars. She says get a pet through the Humane Society or established organizations. Sutherlin says contact the Division of Trade and Consumer Protection with any concerns. We have a link here.

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