With the recent emergence of Ebola, scammers are operating and taking advantage of public fear and the desire to help fight the disease or aid victims of the disease. You may start to see an increase in offerings of ‘cures’ or false ‘updates’ about the disease, or offers to purchase ‘protection kits’ and even false charity scams.
If you have questions about a possible Ebola-related scam, contact the New Mexico State Attorney General’s Office, the US Food and Drug Administration, the Center for Disease Control, or the Federal Trade Commission. Do your homework before parting with any personal information or dollars. The links below will help:
- State Attorney General: naag.org
- Food and Drug Administration: fda.gov
- Center for Disease Control: cdc.gov
- Federal Trade Commission: ftc.gov
Remember, most scams start with the offender making contact with the victim, not the other way around. Most scams pressure you with a sense of urgency and to make a quick decision. You have the right to say ‘no’ and simply hang up the telephone or delete the email that comes in that seems suspicious (and report it to your service provider).
Jill Garcia, Crime Prevention Specialist, APD/Foothills Area Command