As coronavirus infections increase in the U.S., so do the number of phone scams that prey upon our fears. In recent weeks, we've seen a rise in the number of coronavirus-related robocalls that offer everything from at-home test kits to protective gear and health insurance. The callers claim to be from the World Health Organization (WHO), the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), or your local municipality, among others. Unfortunately, the coronavirus provides the perfect recipe for a robocaller: a well-founded fear, a reputable organization to impersonate, and a product or service that would reasonably help.
Like any well-designed scam, these robocalls are easy to fall for in a moment of panic. You can listen to recordings of these calls on the FTC's Avoid Coronavirus Scams page to get a sense of the variety of these calls. There, you'll also find helpful tips on how to avoid becoming a victim. We have a compilation of tips from the FTC here.
One of the best ways to avoid these robocall scams, though, is to use a call blocker that takes some of the guesswork out of the equation for you. There are free services available from the major carriers that block the highest risk calls and there are apps that do a good job of blocking the latest scammers, including those spam calls from unknown numbers in your area. Check out what your options are for blocking calls and texts on iPhones and blocking calls and texts on Android phones.
[Image credit: robocall concept via BigStockPhoto]