Halloween can be a spooky night for many people with haunted houses, trick or treating, and scary movies to entertain you for the night. However, with the coronavirus, some of the activities that we are used to are not the same as how they used to be. Haunted houses are forced to social distance, making it impossible for a scary figure to jump-scare you. We are discouraged to go trick-or-treating due to the fear of the virus ending up in our children’s candy bags. Basically, the only terrifying thing we are encouraged to do is watch scary movies by ourselves. However, that doesn’t mean that’s the only scary thing to watch out for this Halloween. Scammers are still lurking this Halloween night, using the coronavirus to come up with new Halloween 2020 scams.
Types of Frightening Coronavirus Halloween 2020 Scams
- Contact Tracing Scams Cause a Fright: A scammer pretends to be a contact tracer and calls you to tell you that you’ve been in contact with the virus. While a legit contact tracer may ask for your name, birthday, and health information, a scammer will try to pry more information out of you. A scammer might ask for your social security number, financial information, or other personal identifying information that doesn’t make sense to ask in order to gain access to your bank accounts or apply for credit cards under your name. This is a major example of identity theft.
- Home Kits and Vaccinations are Tricks… not treats. Scammers sell these products online or door-to-door, telling their victims that the coronavirus cure is out. While the vaccine is now out as of December 2020, only trust your trusted doctor’s office for more information on when you can get it. Scammers are just lying so they can get your financial information and scam you out of your hard-earned savings.
- Phishing Emails and Texts Contain Malware That Will Haunt You. Scammers send phishing emails and text messages, claiming that you won a Halloween prize or that your favorite online store has an online Halloween sale during COVID-19. Once you click on the link, malware gets downloaded onto your device and haunts you as it steals your personal information.
- Trick or Treat… Fake Tickets to Halloween Events Are Definitely Tricks. Scammers sell fake tickets to Halloween events last minute, hoping that desperate victims will fall for their tricks. The victim purchases the ticket, thinking they finally got access to this super cool Halloween event they want to go to. However, when they show up at the event and the ticket doesn’t work, they realize that the scammer ran off with their money but all they got was a fake ticket.
How to Avoid Coronavirus Halloween Scams 2020
- Don’t give out any personal information. The scammer can use your personal information to commit identity fraud. This means they can pretend to be you as they apply for credit cards, or even gain access to your financial institution’s information.
- Don’t provide money to anyone you don’t know. If it isn’t a well-known online store, then refrain from buying something from someone you barely know.
- Do your research before purchasing something. If a site claims to have a cure from the coronavirus, do more research on that claim. As of right now, you will find that there are no proven cures for the coronavirus yet. This means that whoever is advertising a vaccine or cure is lying to you and is selling fake products.
- Only buy tickets from a verified ticket website. By buying a ticket from a random person on social media, you are risking the huge chance of being scammed. By going on the actual event website or the verified ticket website that the tickets are being sold through, you are preventing the risk of being scammed by purchasing them through a reliable source.
- Report any Halloween scams to the FTC. They will be able to help you by spreading awareness about the scam you are going through to the public. You can also report scam emails and text messages to the FTC.
Social Catfish is Here to Help
At Social Catfish, we want to help you verify the identities of those who might seem suspicious to you. If you have their name, email address, phone number, social media username, or image, you can reverse search and see who the suspected person was that you’ve been in contact with if you think you’ve been a victim of Halloween 2020 scams.
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