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Avoid COVID-19 Scams

by Jennifer Hinterscher | Mar 26, 2020
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For years, fraudsters have emerged and taken advantage of people when they are vulnerable. At Peoples State Bank, we know that with COVID-19 center stage right now, the opportunity for fraud is peaking. Fraudsters' favorite weapon is fear; they prey on your emotions. That's why we're partnering with our debit card processors, Shazam, to bring you these fraud safety reminders.

  1. Peoples State Bank willl NEVER call, text or email to ask for account numbers, card numbers or your PIN. If you're not sure, call the bank directly.  
     
  2. Don’t donate to charities until you fact-check to make sure the charity is real.
     
  3. Be attentive to the elderly. Fraudsters are targeting them with offers to grocery shop and then requesting their private banking information for payment. Try to reach out to them BEFORE they give out their personal information. 
  4. Visit only trusted online shopping sites. Be skeptical of any website that offers premium goods at unbelievable prices — no matter how authentic-looking it is. This includes free trial offers that dupe you into monthly fees in the fine print because the dollar amounts are spelled out in words (five dollars) rather than listed in a typical dollar-amount format ($5).
  5. Don’t wire money to anyone without being 100% certain you know the receiver is really who you think it is. Have you called them using a phone number in your contacts to confirm they need the funds? Have you confirmed with another person who knows them that they are really in trouble? Very few people ask for money to be wired to them. Talk to your bank or credit union to get advice on how best to move money to someone else.
     
  6. Hang up on robocalls. Pressing a key, even the opt-out option, may lead to more calls.
     
  7. Don’t respond to texts and emails about checks from the government or threats from the IRS. Rest assured, if the government wants to get in touch with you, it will likely be by U.S. mail. 

Protecting yourself from all the different types of fraud can feel overwhelming. Just remember to follow your instincts. If you think it may not be legitimate, it's better to stop than risk giving away too much of your information.