Jacksonville's FBI Office Warns People To Be On Guard For COVID-19 Cyber Scams

Mar 25, 2020

Scam artists are ramping up their efforts to fleece people during the coronavirus scare.

Jacksonville-based FBI Special Agent Jon Windness said the fakery includes sham websites, apps and emails designed to steal people’s identity.

“The kind of thing they might do is ask you to verify personal information in order to, for instance, receive an economic stimulus check from the government. But it’s very important for people to know that government agencies will not be sending any unsolicited emails which seek your private information.”

Related: Local, State, And National Coronavirus Coverage

Windness said poor grammar, broad generic greetings and demands that the recipient “act now” are giveaways that you’re dealing with a crook.

“What happens is malicious actors will prey on people’s fears to download malware to your computer or, perhaps, steal login credentials.”

To be safe, Windness said don’t click on links or open attachments from unknown or unsolicited sources.

Any suspicious cyber communications should be reported to the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center so they can be investigated.

Contact reporter Cyd Hoskinson at choskinson@wjct.org, 904-358-6351 and on Twitter at @cydwjctnews.