Updated: Nov 17, 2020
We are in a time that when anything negative occurs, it feels magnified tenfold. People all around the world have gone through a change never before seen in many of our lifetimes. This year has not been kind. Because of this, whenever there is even a tiny silver lining of hope and good luck, it makes it all the more easy to act on impulse and snatch it for the sake of our happiness. But I am here to tell you to protect yourself from your heart, at least in one specific case. There is word on a potential text message you may receive that can not only be extremely convincing, but extremely dangerous as well.
According to CBS News, consumers around the country are receiving text messages that are making false promises of a stimulus check for the amount of $1,200 to be transferred into your bank account as long as you hand over your personal and financial information. The text message will read: "You have received a direct deposit of $1,200 from COVID-19 TREAS FUND. Further action is required to accept this payment into your account. Continue here to accept this payment …" Although tempting, it is a scam designed for whoever is on the other side to receive your personal information while you receive nothing.
Whether you receive a text message, email, or even a potential robocall, something to note is that if the IRS ever needed to contact you, they would not try to reach you through text or email. If or when you receive a notification through these channels of communication, that is an immediate red flag that a criminal is making an attempt to scam you out of your personal information.
The IRS is recommending that you report any suspicious or flagrant activity to firstname.lastname@example.org. When doing so, you will need to include a screenshot of the message, date and time the message was received, and caller ID information. Taking the necessary precautions will help ensure your financial safety during times where safety is of the utmost priority.
Picchi, A. (2020, November 10). Got a text about a $1,200 stimulus check waiting for you? Don't click, IRS says. Retrieved November 14, 2020, from https://www.cbsnews.com/news/stimulus-check-text-scam-irs/