NC Attorney General: Don't believe miracle cures or other coronavirus scams
Posted March 3, 2020 5:26 p.m. EST
Updated March 3, 2020 5:46 p.m. EST
Raleigh, N.C. — With the rise of coronavirus cases in the United States, North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein offered a warning Tuesday about possible scams about the virus that offer misleading information and "miracle cures."
The best way to protect yourself is to follow these tips:
- Be skeptical of “miracle cures.” Ignore online offers for vaccinations and medicines. If you are unsure about a product, check with a doctor before you buy it.
- Watch out for high-priced or low-quality products. High demand for products can cause a price increase. Some stores and online retailers have already raised prices and seen shortages of things like hand sanitizers and face masks. Some of these products may not even be of the quality they promise. When deciding whether a purchase is necessary or if you are unsure about a product, check with a doctor or health professional before you buy it.
- Don’t let anyone rush you. Avoid offers that are only good “now or never.” The fear of getting coronavirus can influence you to make impulsive decisions, so walk away from high-pressure sales pitches or cure-all promises.
- Watch out for phishing emails. Criminals will try to steal your money and information by sending you phony communications. If a person claiming to be an expert on coronavirus contacts you, ignore them. Don’t open or click links from an unfamiliar sender.
- Look out for unauthorized or fraudulent charities. Don’t let anyone rush you to into making a donation. Visit give.org or www.charitywatch.org to make sure the organization you are considering donating to is legitimate.
Remember, as all scams go – if it’s too good to be true – it probably is.
If a company contacts you and you’re unsure of their authenticity or if you believe that you have been the victim of a scam, contact the Attorney General's Office Consumer Protection Division at ncdoj.gov/file-a-complaint or 1-877-5-NO-SCAM.