Chief Julie Flaherty reminds residents to be vigilant of potential scams around Covid-19, such as requesting donations or selling products claiming to cure, prevent or detect the virus.
Residents should not partake in any Covid-19 testing from door-to-door solicitors, people who approach them at grocery stores/other community venues, or solicitors who call requesting financial information in return for a test or mail Covid-19 test offerings.
Flaherty warns that residents should never give personal information, medicare numbers, money or home access to people soliciting tests. If a testing kit is mailed to you, you should not accept the test. Return the test to the sender and alert local authorities immediately.
“It’s all too common to see scams pop up during uncertain times, unfortunately,” said Flaherty in a March 23 news release. “It is important to properly research offers, pay attention to official information regarding Covid-19 and tell authorities of any suspicious activity you encounter.”
The Massachusetts’s Attorney General’s Office provides these tips for residents to protect themselves from other scams and frauds:
- Watch out for high-priced or low-quality products; report any retailers that inflate prices on products like hand sanitizer and face masks.
- Beware of false and misleading information being spread online. Use reputable sources such as the World Health Organization, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Massachusetts Department of Public Health.
- Keep an eye out for unauthorized or fraudulent charities or solicitations. Before donating to a coronavirus charity, make sure the charity is legitimate.
If anyone has questions or feels like they have been victimized, they are encouraged to call the Arlington Police Department at 781-643-1212.
Massachusetts residents who believe they are victims of fraud or other criminal activity related to the pandemic should contact the United States Attorney's Office at USAMA.victimassistance at usdoj.
This news announcement was published Monday, March 23. The writer works for John Guilfoil Public Relations, which provides news releases to the town.
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