Knowledge — 2 years ago

Coronavirus Scams: This Is How Scammers Defraud People Using the Coronavirus

by Rhon A.

Coronavirus Scams, Corona Scam

Common Corona Frauds

The ongoing Coronavirus pandemic has caused a lot of panic, resulting in people taking a lot of irrational decisions and hoarding supplies. While the fear of Covid-19 is understandable and prevalent, a lot of unscrupulous are using this opportunity to perpetrate scams, mostly using the internet and email. Many of these scams allow hackers access to their victims' confidential information such as social security, credit card details and more while many of them seek to sell fake products at overpriced rates.

Coronavirus Scams
What are the kinds of Coronavirus Scams?

The most common Corona scams are phishing scams where a user receives an email from someone claiming to be a legitimate source with an attachment that is supposed to contain the latest statistics or safety measures on the outbreak. These emails are disguised to look like they're coming from an authority such as the local government the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the World Health Organization (WHO) or Johns Hopkins University.

On opening the attachment, it usually loads a virus on to the user's computer that allows an attacker to install malware which is then used to steal sensitive information. Other emails may contain fake insurance offers, advice on investments and trading and even emails claiming to be from the Internal Revenue Service offering tax refunds.

Another form of a corona scam is the selling of fake goods, notably hand sanitizers and face masks, both of which are in short supply due to their high demand. Many of the goods sold through these emails may not exist, or be fake or may even contain banned substances. In most cases, these products will never arrive but if they do arrive, they may be dangerous to use.

In some cases, the corona scammer might even be able to use your credit card information to make unauthorized transactions using their victims' bank accounts. Some scammers send emails with a list of products that they claim will prevent the user from being infected with the virus or even cure them if they test positive for Covid-19.

Reports have also surfaced of strangers approaching old people and offering their help to run errands and ask them for their credit card details. Local authorities have informed people to stay away from anyone offering such help as they may be fraudulent or scammers looking to make money in the name of the Coronavirus.

Many emails also target vulnerable people by making offers and claiming that stocks are low, thereby building a sense of urgency in their intended victims.

Corona Scam

How to prevent becoming a victim of email scams

In order to prevent becoming a victim, anyone who receives an email from someone pretending to be an official or authority figure, one can visit Once on this page, you can enter the email address from which you received the suspicious mail and click on the search button. Once this has been clicked, the system analyzes the mail address and provides a list of potential matches. You can then click on the individual in question and view a report on their email address.

If you are unable to find the email address, or if there is none, then visit On this page, you need to enter the first and last name of the person who might be perpetuating the scam and then select the state in which they are located. The system then looks up all people with that name, present in that state and presents a complete background check including arrest records, court records, and criminal background details.


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