The FBI Warns Public of Potential COVID-19 Related Scams

The FBI has published a press release about potential scams related to COVID-19. They say that these scams include marketing fake or unapproved COVID-19 antibody tests which can lead to false results and scammers attempting to steal personal information for medical insurance or identity theft schemes.

Dr. Earl Stoddard, the Director at Montgomery County Office of Emergency Management & Homeland Security, said that he was unaware of specific instances of these scams in Montgomery County, but that this doesn’t mean residents have not been targeted.

“I am not aware of any specific targeted efforts on Montgomery County residents but with a population of over a million…I am quite confident that some of our residents have been targeted at some point,” said Stoddard.

Dr. Stoddard said that if residents are concerned about scams they can contact the Montgomery County Office of Consumer Protection. “We are certainly very interested in our residents being protected and if they are concerned about anything they can reach out,” said Stoddard.

The FBI states in their press release to be wary of any antibody tests that cannot be verified, advertisements about tests that come from unknown sources, marketers offer incentivized testing, individuals saying that the government requires you to take a COVID-19 antibody test, and anyone offering to perform these tests for cash.

To keep yourself safe, the FBI recommends checking the FDA website for approved antibody tests and testing companies, speaking with your doctor before trying at-home antibody tests, using health insurance approved labs, keeping your personal and health information between yourself and trusted medical professionals, checking your bills for any suspicious claims, and following the guidance from the CDC regarding COVID-19 tests.

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Isabel Cleary

About Isabel Cleary

Isabel Cleary is a rising senior at the University of Maryland, majoring in Broadcast Journalism and International Relations. She is currently a Summer 2020 intern at Montgomery Community Media. Follow her on twitter @IsabelCleary

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