Attorney General warns of COVID-19 stimulus check scam

Attorney General Peter F. Neronha is urging the public to be vigilant of scams in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Ri Attorney General Warns Of Price Gouging And Other Scams During Coronavirus Outbreak

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WLNE) – Attorney General Peter F. Neronha is urging the public to be vigilant of scams in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The warning comes as calls, e-mails, and text messages have begun circulating promising federal aid checks and seeking upfront payment, bank account information, social security numbers and other personally identification information are scams.

Neronha urges the public not to share personal identification information in response to the circulating solicitations.

“The checks do not exist yet. If you receive a message promising you that money, it’s a scam,” said Attorney General Neronha. “These are challenging times and many people could use some relief. Unfortunately, there are scammers who will try and take advantage of people in need. If you see it, call us. The more information we get from the public, the more we can get the word out to help others.”

The consumer protection team for Rhode Island has received complaints from individuals who have received text messages urging them to click on a link to receive their $1,000 assistance check and emails with the subject line “COVID-19 Pandemic Stimulus Package.”

If consumers click on the link or open the e-mail, they are then asked to provide personal information, including bank account and social security numbers before receiving their check.

If you see these scams or think you may have been the victim of a scam, please contact Rhode Island’s Consumer Protection Unit at (401) 274-4400, or email consumers@riag.ri.gov. Consumers can also fill out an online complaint form here.

Categories: Coronavirus, News, Regional News, Rhode Island