Enactment of the CARES Act in late March 2020 together with three related pieces of pandemic relief legislation represent at least $2.4 trillion in aid and presents unparalleled opportunities to assist those in greatest need as well as unmatched prospects for fraud, misuse of the funds, and other criminal conduct.
Offices of Inspector General and their federal law enforcement partners throughout the government are on high alert regarding potential fraud schemes related to economic stimulus programs managed by a variety of federal agencies, including the U.S. Small Business Administration, the U.S. Department of the Treasury, and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in response to the Novel Coronavirus Pandemic (COVID-19). In addition, the Pandemic Response Accountability Committee (PRAC) created by the CARES Act seeks to help prevent and identify fraud involving federal pandemic recovery funds.
The U.S. Department of Justice has issued warnings that criminals are attempting to exploit COVID-19 worldwide through a variety of scams, including:
Individuals and businesses selling fake cures for COVID-19 online and engaging in other forms of fraud.
Phishing emails from entities posing as the World Health Organization or the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Malicious websites and apps that appear to share virus-related information to gain and lock access to your devices until payment is received.
Seeking donations fraudulently for illegitimate or non-existent charitable organizations.
If you think you are a victim of a scam or attempted fraud involving COVID-19 or have information related to potential fraud, please submit a complaint using the hotline form.
For additional resources on Fraud Awareness and Prevention from across the federal government, view our collection of fraud-related resource links from across the federal government.;