STATEHOUSE (May 8, 2020) — State Rep. Beau Baird (R-Greencastle) urges Hoosiers to be vigilant in protecting themselves against scams, which are surging during the public health pandemic.
He said it's important to stay informed and alert because fraudsters are using coronavirus-related fears to obtain personal and financial information from unsuspecting victims.
"Many Hoosiers are rightfully anxious about their health and finances during this crisis," Baird said. "Unfortunately, even in times like these, some people use this vulnerability to find potential targets for scams. Everyone should remain wary of such activity and report any fraud they encounter."
According to the Federal Trade Commission, scammers are using text messages and robocalls to offer free home testing kits, promote fake cures and sell low-priced health insurance. Government imposter scams are also on the rise, including those targeting people on Medicare. If a caller claims to be a Medicare representative and asks to verify personal information like bank account, Social Security or Medicare numbers, Hoosiers should hang up.
Criminals are also taking advantage of individuals who are expecting federal stimulus payments. Scammers will call, text and email asking for personal or bank account information in order to release funds. The IRS won’t contact individuals by phone, email, text message or social media with information about stimulus payments, or to ask for a Social Security number, bank account, or government benefits debit card account number.
To guard against coronavirus scams, Baird asked Hoosiers to follow these five tips provided by the FTC:
Hoosiers who believe they are a victim of a scam should contact law enforcement immediately. Report scams to the Indiana Attorney General’s office by visiting www.IndianaConsumer.com and the FTC by visiting ftc.gov/complaint.
State Rep. Beau Baird (R-Greencastle) represents House District 44, which includes
all of Putnam County and portions of Clay, Morgan, Owen and Parke counties.
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