Rockwood couple warns against con artists luring others with second stimulus check text messages

Investigations

ROCKWOOD, Tenn. (WATE) — In Washington, D.C. talks continue over the second coronavirus stimulus package, and scam artists are taking advantage of the debate.

The Federal Trade Commission has issued a warning about con artists sending text messages or phone calls regarding a second federal stimulus check.

Luckily a couple here did not fall for it.

Lynn Courtney and Al Knox were married on Valentine’s Day of this year — a month before the COVID-19 pandemic struck.

Lynn and Al are disabled. He’s had cerebral palsy since birth. Both live on limited incomes. Like most people, they can’t afford to lose money.

The other day a text message came about a second government stimulus check.

“It says the last day to get your twelve-hundred dollar stimulus check from the IRS is October the 15th,” Courtney said. “Call this number for assistance.

“I already received my twelve-hundred dollars stimulus check back in April. So, they’re acting like there is another one.

“First of all the stimulus check does not come from the IRS,” Knox said. “We know that.”

The FTC is warning that scammers are trying to trick people like Al and Lynn out of their personal information, and they use scare tactics in the process.

“They threatened me over the phone,” Al said. “They told me that if I did not give them my Social Security number a warrant would be issued for my arrest.”

The Federal Trade Commission says no one from the government will threaten to arrest you.

To date there is no second stimulus check for Americans. If you receive a phone call, text, or email asking for personal details or money in order to get your stimulus check it is a scam.

Lynn says if they received a text about a second government check, so have others. And, it may be tempting for some to call the number.

“If they act like it is another stimulus check, I don’t want anyone giving the information,” Lynn said.

Whenever, or if, the second stimulus bill is approved, you will not have to worry about calling or texting an agency to get your check.

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