Scammers targeting Florida seniors on Facebook with offers of fake COVID-19 grants
Florida officials issued a consumer alert to warn residents about a new scam targeting seniors in the wake of the pandemic.
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WWSB/WVLT) - Florida officials issued a consumer alert to warn residents about a new scam targeting seniors in the wake of the pandemic. WWSB reported that the Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody has released information about a scam that targets residents with offers of fake COVID-19 grants.
A press release from the AG’s office said scammers are contacting seniors via Facebook Messenger, email and text offering grants. The scammers request payment up front for delivery of the grant money. WWSB reported that the scammers had a website which featured videos of seniors endorsing the service, but it was taken down. Its previous URL was https://usafederalgrantclaim.wixsite.com/grantinfo.
The AG’s office offered tips on avoiding this scam:
- The government is not contacting seniors and offering grants to stay home and stop the virus.
- Requests for upfront payments in exchange for a grant, loan or any kind of government benefit is a red flag.
- Be cautious about offers related to COVID-19 that come from Facebook, even if it comes from a familiar account.
- Never click on links sent in unsolicited messages. They could contain malware or connect the victim to a website that could obtain their personal information.
- Watch out for websites or messages that have typos, grammatical mistakes or awkward word choices.
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