WATERTOWN, N.Y. (WWTI) — With many anticipating the arrival of the third round of stimulus checks hitting their bank account, Americans are being warned of stimulus payment-related scams.
According to Watertown Savings Bank, there are four scams to be on the lookout for, warning residents of any telephone calls, e-mails or websites that request personal or bank related information while offering services considered “too good to be true.”
Watertown Savings Bank urges all consumers to be on the lookout for websites and social media attempts to request money or personal information. The IRS does not call, email or text consumers to verify or request this information.
Additionally, consumers are urged not to open unexpected emails that appear to be coming from the IRS. Theses scams are detailed below:
- Fake Checks: Scammers may mail a physical check, resembling a government-issued stimulus check. Once the check is deposited, the scammer will claim the individual has mistakenly overpaid and ask them to return a portion of the money.
- Phishing emails and texts: Those awaiting stimulus payments might receive emails, texts, or messages on social media claiming to be from the government. One of these emails or messages might ask victims to click on a link to “verify” their information or fill out an application requiring bank account information to receive a stimulus check.
- Fake websites: Links in phishing emails or text messages can lead consumers to fake websites that can download malware. This malware can steal personal information. Instead of clicking links, officials urge consumers to start at irs.gov/coronavirus to check eligibility, payment status, enter direct deposit information or find out how to receive payments.
- Robocalls: Scammers may try to contact victims through robocalls and pretend to be government officials. These calls are recorded messages that sometimes claim an individual needs to pay an upfront fee to retrieve their stimulus check, or ask to verify personal information.
If you receive a suspicious email, forward it to the IRS’s phishing watchdog.