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Scam alert: BBB warns of scams as government begins to issue third stimulus checks

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(WJW) – The Better Business Bureau is warning Americans of potential scams as the stimulus checks in the third round of relief payments are set to start hitting bank accounts this weekend.

According to the consumer protection organization, when the previous rounds of stimulus checks were distributed many Americans reported to the BBB Scam Tracker that they had been contacted by scammers about their checks via text messages, phone calls, and emails.

The BBB warns that many of these tactics may be used again in the coming days and weeks.

The organization warns to be on the lookout for emails or text messages instructing recipients to click a link to “request benefit payments.” The link may connect users to an application requesting personal information to “make sure you are getting all the payments owed to you.” 

The BBB warns that this “application” is really a way for scammers to phish for personal details and commit identity theft.

In regard to phone cons, the BBB says scammers will pretend to be officials from a government agency. They often insist on “being paid immediately” or for “confirmation of personal information” so that a stimulus check can be issued.

Phone scammers may also claim additional funds are available to individuals once they pay a “small processing fee” with a pre-paid debit card.

Anyone who receives messages or calls similiar to these should report the incident to the BBB Scam Tracker.

You can visit the BBB website for more information on scams and tips for spotting them.

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