COVID-19: Spot the Scams

Back To Articles COVID-19 How to Spot a Scam
Live Assured isn’t just a tagline; it’s our promise that especially during times of uncertainty, Preferred Mutual’s promise will always be protecting what matters to you!

Now, more than ever, it is important to recognize the increase and variety of scams, especially as they relate to the Coronavirus. Protect yourself and avoid these scams by learning about them.

According to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), scammers are taking advantage of fears surrounding COVID-19. In a time of such uncertainty, it is easy to become a victim. We urge you to understand what those scams might be and what the FTC is doing to help protect you!

We’ve already seen numerous examples of offenders stealing cargo loads of toilet paper, gloves, sanitizers, and anything else they can sell on the black market for a profit! Make no mistake about it; the threat to your health and well-being is real, and is made worse by those exploiting the crisis for monetary gain.

COVID-19 Insurance Scams

With much of the country on lockdown or practicing social distancing measures, several organizations that monitor insurance fraud have issued alerts to consumers. Insurance fraud is a multibillion dollar criminal enterprise that often preys on consumers’ fears!

Car Insurance Scams

Preferred Mutual remains vigilant in protecting what matters most to you, and unfortunately, we will likely continue to see a rise in the number of scams and new methods on exploiting COVID-19 worldwide. 

Staged accidents are generally defined as an event where someone purposely causes an accident in order to make a claim against your car insurance or their own. Intentionally rear-ending or sideswiping another car are common schemes. 

With much of the country practicing social distancing, fewer cars on the road and fewer witnesses, scammers have an opportunity to use fear of spreading COVID-19 as an excuse to discourage calling police, leaving an opening to file false insurance claims.

Auto repair fraud can happen when a repair shop takes advantage of both you and your insurance company! Fraud reports indicate that some repair shops are charging excessive fees for cleansing, disinfecting and storing vehicles while they are deemed non-essential and face closure.

Other Types of Insurance Scams

Most travel insurance policies do not cover pandemics, so if someone pitches you travel insurance that specifically covers COVID-19-related problems, that’s a red flag!

Bogus insurance agents are people who claim to be licensed agents and mimic legitimate, mainstream insurance companies in their pitches to sell COVID-19 insurance.

Phishing/spooking/spam scams are usually done via email and request personal information. The Federal Bureau of Investigation urges you to avoid filling out any forms in an email that requests personal information and not to click on links in any emails.

Robocalls can come from scammers falsely claiming to be from a well-known insurance company, asking you to call a toll-free number where someone in their scam rings tries to sell you COVID-19 health insurance coverages. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has warned that scammers are posing as Medicare representatives, running small business listing scams.

If you believe you have been a victim of a scam or attempted fraud involving COVID-19, you can report it without leaving your home through a number of platforms. Go to:

Live Assured isn’t just a tagline; it’s our promise that especially during times of uncertainty, Preferred Mutual’s promise will always be protecting what matters to you!

This information is intended for educational purposes only and is not legal advice and/or an authoritative guide.

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