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Michigan Lawyer Basic Dana Nessel Publicizes Value Rise Throughout Coronavirus Period

Detroit Free Press

State Lawyer Basic Dana Nessel issued a shopper alert on Wednesday urging Michiganders to concentrate on a brand new COVID-19-related rip-off recognized in Bay County.

An individual claiming to be from the Michigan Division of Well being and Human Companies supplied a grant of $ 14,000 to residents of Bay County. The scammer instructed the so-called winners that in an effort to declare the cash, that they had to offer private data akin to social safety numbers and dates of delivery.

“The crooks stay targeted on profiting from the continued pandemic to achieve entry to your private data,” Nessel stated in a press launch.

Different stories of COVID-19 scams have been made by callers claiming to be from the Ionia County Well being Division and Benzie Leelanau’s Public Well being Division, Nessel stated, and referred to as on residents to qu ‘They’re providing every part from medicine and residential COVID-19 assessments to authorities grants in change for personally identifiable data.

“I am unable to repeat it sufficient: do not fall for these makes an attempt,” Nessel stated. “State and native well being departments won’t ever name you with threats or unrealistic requests that require you to offer data akin to your Social Safety quantity, date of delivery or tackle. You will need to stay vigilant within the face of those scams.

To sound extra official, Nessel warned that some scammers use one thing referred to as “spoofing,” which causes the decision to look like from a authentic authorities telephone quantity, however not. Callers may also be persuasive {and professional}.

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Any resident who receives such a name should cling up the telephone. Nobody ought to give private data to an unsolicited caller.

To report such scams, Michiganders can go to the Lawyer Basic’s Workplace web site, www.michigan.gov/ag, or by calling 877-765-8388.

In February, Oakland County officers reported that two folks had acquired calls from scammers providing COVID-19 vaccine appointments in change for private and monetary data.

“Oakland County won’t ever ask for any monetary data, together with bank card or Social Safety numbers,” Oakland County well being official Leigh-Anne Stafford stated in an announcement on the time. . “In case you are undecided if it is a rip-off, keep away from sharing private data over the telephone and report it to authorities.”

Anybody providing an opportunity to leap ahead on the state’s precedence record for a COVID-19 vaccine in change for money is a con artist, the Federal Commerce Fee has warned.

“You’ll be able to’t pay to place your identify on a listing to get the vaccine,” the company stated in a shopper weblog publish. “It is a rip-off. You’ll be able to’t pay to get early entry to the vaccine. It is a rip-off. Nobody authentic will name in regards to the vaccine and ask on your social safety quantity, checking account or card quantity. credit score. It is a rip-off. ”

The FTC provides these shopper recommendation:

1.) Contact a dependable supply for extra data. Examine with state or native well being departments, your well being care supplier or pharmacist to confirm any provides or claims regarding the coronavirus.

2.) Don’t pay to register for the vaccine. Anybody who asks for fee to place you on a listing, make an appointment for you, or reserve a spot on-line is a con artist.

3.) Ignore gross sales bulletins for the COVID-19 vaccine. You can not purchase a vaccine. It is solely accessible in areas permitted by the federal authorities and states, and it is free.

4.) Look ahead to surprising or uncommon texts. In case your healthcare supplier or pharmacist has used textual content messages to contact you prior to now, chances are you’ll obtain a textual content message a few COVID-19 vaccine. In case you obtain a textual content message, name your healthcare supplier or pharmacist immediately to ensure the message is authentic. Scammers additionally ship SMS. So do not click on on hyperlinks in textual content messages, particularly messages you did not count on.

5.) Do not open emails, attachments or hyperlinks from folks you do not know or who come unexpectedly. You’ll be able to obtain harmful malware to your laptop or telephone.

6.) Do not share data with folks you do not know. Nobody from a vaccine distribution web site, well being division, well being care supplier’s workplace, pharmacy, insurance coverage firm, or Medicare will name you, ship you a SMS or e-mail asking on your social safety, bank card, or checking account quantity to enroll in the vaccine.

Christina Corridor, editor of Free Press, contributed to this report.

Contact Kristen Jordan Shamus: kshamus@freepress.com. Comply with her on Twitter @kristenshamus.

Learn or share this story: https://www.freep.com/story/information/native/michigan/2021/03/17/michigan-attorney-general-consumer-alert-covid-19-scams/4739399001/