The Roanoke Rapids Police Department wants to make everyone aware that the COVID-19 Economic Impact Payments are due to be arriving in the next few weeks.
“We want everyone to be able to use these to help with the needs of their families,” Captain Jamie Hardy said. “The Roanoke Rapids Police Department urges everyone to be alert to the possible scams relating to these payments as well as many other malicious attempts to defraud people relating to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“If you are unsure please do not hesitate to call before you make a decision, because once the money is gone, getting it back may not be an option.”
Hardy said the United States Treasury Department sent the following information to law enforcement:
The IRS will not contact you to ask you to pay a fee or confirm personal information
prior to receiving the Economic Impact Payment.
If you receive a phone call, text, or email asking for payment or confirmation of personal or financial information, it is a scam.
Do not give out your bank account, debit account or PayPal account information
even if the caller claims it is necessary to get your check or that by doing so you can
receive your payment faster.
Don’t click on links in texts or emails relating to Economic Impact Payments, as this could allow scammers to place tracing devices on your electronic devices and gain access to your personal information for later use.
Don't engage with scammers or thieves, simply hang up or delete texts/emails.
It will take a few weeks before the treasury sends the Economic Impact Payments. If you receive a “check” for an odd amount, for instance $1,322.48, or a check that requires you to verify the check online or by calling a number, it is a fraud.
The treasury also warns people to be on guard for the following:
Individuals and businesses selling fake cures for COVID-19 online and engaging
in other forms of fraud.
Phishing emails from entities posing as the World Health Organization or the
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Malicious websites and apps that appear to share coronavirus-related
information to gain and lock access to your devices until payment is received.
People seeking donations fraudulently for illegitimate or non-existent charitable
“In these uncertain and trying times, we need to stay strong and stand together united in purpose,” the treasury said. “Don’t become a victim by allowing criminals to exploit your emotions. Stay vigilant and tell your family, friends and neighbors about these scams.”