(WBRE/WYOU) — On Friday President Trump signed a historic $2.2 trillion stimulus package. But some people are taking advantage of the relief the package brings to those who are concerned about their finances through scams.
“Multiple law enforcement agencies, the Treasury Department, and the FBI are receiving reports that individuals are trying to capitalize on the vulnerabilities of Americans during this time,” Trooper First Class David Peters of Pennsylvania State Police Hazleton, said.
Officials say scammers are contacting people via phone, text or email, asking for personal or financial information under the guise of helping to obtain or expedite stimulus relief funds from the government.
“Or in some cases some people have reported that they’ve received the check. There are some reports out there that a bogus check has been circulating or been mailed to people saying it’s their stimulus relief,” Peters said.
Trooper Peters says these checks are fraudulent and the real stimulus checks have not been sent out yet. He says it’s important to know that the process of receiving the checks is automatic.
“You don’t have to sign up. The IRS and the Treasury Department are using things based off your tax return,” Peters said.
If you’ve already filed your taxes, and you’ve signed up to receive your tax return by direct deposit, you will get the stimulus relief that way. If you have not signed up for direct deposit, you will receive a paper check. The stimulus relief is based off of your most recently filed tax return.
“If they are the victim of crime, they should contact their local police agency to report that. Understand that no one is going to call you to obtain your information for a stimulus check.
Officials say the process of economic relief will take a few weeks, and advise people to be patient.