Contact the National Center for Disaster Fraud (NCDF) Hotline to report any fraud related to COVID-19 (Coronavirus). You can contact the NCDF Hotline by phone or submit through the NCDF Web Complaint Form.
The NCDF is a national coordinating agency within the Department of Justice’s Criminal Division dedicated to improving the detection, prevention, investigation and prosecution of criminal conduct related to natural and manmade disasters and other emergencies, such as the coronavirus (COVID-19). Hotline staff will obtain information regarding your complaint, which will then be reviewed by law enforcement officials.
Review your Medicare Summary Notices for errors and report anything suspicious to Medicare. If you think a charge is incorrect and you know the provider, you may want to call their office to ask about it. The person you speak to may help you better understand the services or supplies you got, or they may realize a billing error was made. If you contact the provider and suspect that Medicare is being charged for health care you didn’t get, or you don’t know the provider on the claim, find out how to report fraud.
Fraudsters may pretend to be government employees and claim there is identity theft or another problem with a beneficiaries Social Security number, account, or benefits. In fact, the latest trick of robocalls and live callers has increased recently. The Social Security Administration will mail someone a letter if there is a problem, they will not call the beneficiary or a member of that person’s family. Be on the lookout if a caller saying there is a problem with your Social Security number or account.
Fraudsters are targeting beneficiaries in a number of ways, including telemarketing calls, social media platforms, and door-to-door visits. These scammers use the Coronavirus pandemic to benefit themselves, and beneficiaries face potential harms. The personal information collected can be used to fraudulently bill Federal health care programs and commit medical identity theft. If Medicare or Medicaid denies the claim for an unapproved test, the beneficiary could be responsible for the cost.
If you’re an older adult, person with a disability, or a caregiver for one, you may need help picking up groceries, prescriptions and other necessary supplies. If someone you don’t know offers to help, be wary. Some scammers offer to buy supplies, but never return with the goods or your money. It’s usually safer to find a trusted friend or neighbor or arrange a delivery with a well-known company.
Many companies are quickly making arrangements for employees to work from home, and others are fast tracking policies to meet the requirements of shelter-in-place orders issued by state officials. When transitioning from an office setting to home, many may find themselves more vulnerable to tech support scams. Work-from-home employees are at a higher risk of being targeted by scammers, especially through phishing emails or through an unsecured network connection.
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is actively monitoring markets for frauds, illicit schemes and other misconduct affecting U.S. investors. The SEC warns that consumers should be skeptical of claims that products or services can prevent, detect or treat COVID-19, or help to solve issues resulting from the current pandemic. Consumers should be wary of promises of high investment returns with little or no risk, unregistered professionals, aggressive sales tactics and other red flags.
The SEC has identified several fraudulent investment schemes and have provided detailed information and guidance in these areas:
- Fraudulent stock promotions and market manipulation
- Fraudulent unregistered offerings
- Charitable investment scams
- Community-based financial frauds
- Bogus CDs offering high returns
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The Financial Resilience Center was developed by National Disability Institute with generous funding from the Wells Fargo Foundation.