Beware of Scams During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Sue McConnell, President of the Cleveland Better Business Bureau spoke with America’s Work Force on April 6 to discuss some scams to be on the lookout for during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Sue McConnell Better Business BureauMcConnell warned listeners of some scams to be aware of during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. She said that because of the pandemic, which has required people to “shelter in place,” many online scammers have come out of the woodworks to prey on easy targets. One online shopping scheme McConnell spoke about is the sales of surgical masks. Due to the panic from the COVID-19 virus, people are panic purchasing surgical masks to prevent the spread or possible contraction of the virus, buying them from anybody selling. Many scammers have either been only offering one mask when the buyer thought they purchased multiple, or not sending any masks and keeping the money. She said that these scammers use stock images they find online to make their websites seem legitimate.

McConnell then spoke about a social security scam to beware of. With the amount of workers losing their jobs due to the COVID-19 virus, many people have filed for unemployment. They will receive their unemployment checks thanks to the stimulus bill that has passed. Unfortunately, scammers are contacting these people claiming to be with the IRS and telling them that they will not be able to receive their checks without giving up their social security number. She said that they will try this method to get other personal information out of you, such as your bank account information. McConnell stressed that if anybody has any questions or concerns, to contact the Social Security Administration before giving out their number.

Mark Gruenberg PAI Press Associates Inc., Union NewsMark Gruenberg, labor writer for Press Associates Union discussed jobless numbers and people applying for unemployment. With the sudden surge in the amount of people who have had to apply for unemployment, Gruenberg said that some states are slow to respond to unemployment claims and sending checks out. He also discussed the sabotage on paid family and sick leave. Gruenberg reported that some lawmakers are attempting to sabotage paid leave by allowing companies who are closed due to government orders to not pay their workers for their time off.

AWF host Ed “Flash” Ferenc spoke about Walmart employees being outraged that they are not being provided any type of protective gear while being required to show up to work. Not only is Walmart not providing workers with gloves, masks or disinfectant spray, they are banning workers from bringing in and wearing their own gear. If a worker is found wearing gloves or a protective mask, they are being forced to either remove it, or go home with no pay.


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