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Beware of a new COVID-19 Scam 

 

The State of New Jersey and County Health Departments are hiring Contact Tracers  to track the origins of local COVID-19 outbreaks.

Beware of persons calling and pretending to be public health Contact Tracers asking for you personal information including your social security number.  Contract Tracers do not ask for personal information.

If you receive an email from someone pretending to be a health department official asking for you personal information do not click on the link!

If you receive a text message from someone claiming to be a contact tracer not open it!

From the FTC, "There’s no question, contact tracing plays a vital role in helping to stop the spread of COVID-19. But scammers, pretending to be contact tracers and taking advantage of how the process works, are also sending text messages. But theirs are spam text messages that ask you to click a link. Check out the image below. Unlike a legitimate text message from a health department, which only wants to let you know they’ll be calling, this message includes a link to click".

Please report any suspicious scams involving Covid-19 to your local police department along with the phone number that called you or the email address or name.

 

The link below is from a recent NJ.com new story about these types of scams.

https://www.nj.com/coronavirus/2020/05/beware-of-coronavirus-contact-tracing-scams-nj-officials-warn-thousands-of-fraud-cases-reported.html

 

The Fentanyl Crisis

Fentanyl, which is regularly being mixed with Cocaine, Heroin, Methamphetamine and other illegal drugs, is a leading cause of overdose deaths.  According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, in 2017 Fentanyl was involved in 71 percent of all unintentional overdose deaths.  

Crime Stoppers has joined the fight against those who knowingly mix and /or sell illegal drugs which contain Fentanyl.   If you know someone who is involved with the preparation and/or sale of illegal street drugs mixed with the deadly drug Fentanyl, Crime Stoppers of Middlesex County is seeking that information.   The program will allow you to remain anonymous and will pay you a reward should your information lead to an arrest.   

This problem is everyone’s fight as its deadly consequences has no societal boundaries. Crime Stoppers of Middlesex County along with federal, state, county and local law enforcement partners is asking the community for help.

Grandparent scams are on the rise-Report to the police as soon as possible and do not give money to anyone!
 
Scammers search social media for persons with grand children and use that information against you!  Set all social media to private and notify your friends and family.
 
Scammers may pose as relatives or friends, calling or sending messages to urge you to wire money immediately. They’ll say they need cash to help with an emergency — like getting out of jail, paying a hospital bill, getting into an accident or needing to leave a foreign country. Their goal is to trick you into sending money before you realize it’s a scam.
 
Verify an Emergency

If someone calls or sends a message claiming to be a family member or a friend desperate for money:

  • Resist the urge to act immediately, no matter how dramatic the story is.
  • Verify the person’s identity by asking questions that a stranger couldn’t possibly answer.
  • Call a phone number for your family member or friend that you know to be genuine.
  • Check the story out with someone else in your family or circle of friends, even if you’ve been told to keep it a secret.
  • Write down the phone number and any details

Scammers Use Tricks

They impersonate your loved one convincingly.

It’s surprisingly easy for a scam artist to impersonate someone. Social networking sites make it easier than ever to sleuth out personal and family information. Scammers also could hack into the e-mail account of someone you know. To make their story seem legitimate, they may involve another crook who claims to be an authority figure, like a lawyer or police officer.

They play on your emotions.

Scammers are banking on your love and concern to outweigh your skepticism. In one version of this scam, con artists impersonate grandchildren in distress to trick concerned grandparents into sending money. Sometimes, this is called a “Grandparent Scam.”

They swear you to secrecy.

Con artists may insist that you keep their request for money confidential – to keep you from checking out their story and identifying them as imposter's. Victims of this scam often don’t realize they’ve been tricked until days later, when they speak to their actual family member or friend who knows nothing about the “emergency.” By then, the money they sent can't be recovered.

Remember, if you believe you are being scammed or have been scammed or get a call, check with relatives first even though they tell you not too and call your local police as soon as possible.