Skip to Content

Preferred Branch

Mason City (641)423-1600 Change Location

Your Preferred Branch

Mason City Change Location

2601 4th Street SW
Mason City, IA 50401

Tel. (641)423-1600

Hours
Monday-Thursday: 9:00am - 4:00pm
Friday: 9:00am - 5:00pm
Sat: 9:00am - 12:00pm
Get Directions

Change Preferred Branch

  • Charles City Branch
    300 North Main Street
    Charles City, IA 50616

  • Clarion Branch
    315 Central Avenue East
    Clarion, IA 50525

  • Kanawha Branch
    220 North Main Street
    Kanawha, IA 50447

  • Latimer Branch
    119 North Akir Street
    Latimer, IA 50452

  • Mason City State Street Branch
    33 East State Street
    Mason City, IA 50401

  • Mason City West Branch
    2601 4th Street SW
    Mason City, IA 50401

  • Mora Branch
    730 Forest Ave East
    Mora, MN 55051

  • New Hampton Branch
    124 West Main Street
    New Hampton, IA 50659

  • Osage Branch
    501 Main Street
    Osage, IA 50461

mail icon Search Icon Menu
Welcome

Welcome!

Start navigating site here or scroll down

Close
Home Blog Be Safe and Watch Out for Scams!

Be Safe and Watch Out for Scams!

Be Safe and Watch Out for Scams!

As if life isn’t unpredictable enough, now all sorts of COVID -19 scams are erupting. It’s quite apparent that during times of hardship there are bad people out there who cannot resist the opportunity to prey upon human vulnerabilities. To fend off these scams, we are urging everyone to take extra care and protect their personal information (ex. bank account number, Social Security number, and date of birth).

Scammers will try to trick you by approaching you with timely information they know you are interested in. They may make themselves appear to come from a familiar source. Their goal is to catch you off guard and have you do what they want before thinking your actions through. They will try to get in touch with you by phone, email, postal mail, text, or social media.

Here are some recent scams that have been topping the charts:

  • Receiving funds stating Unemployment Benefit, Cares Act, or other deposits that you are unaware of AND you did not apply for the benefits directly with a government agency.
     
  • Receiving Unemployment Checks from a state that you don’t live or work in.
     
  • For those who applied for a grant, it is being sent to them as Unemployment Benefits.
     
  • Receiving a deposit you were not expecting and then being asked to send part of it back as a refund or to a “friend” by using gift cards or funds via a money transfer app (ApplePay, Vemno, Zelle, Paypal).
     
  • Being conned in a romance fraud to urgently send your “love connection partner” funds in the same payment manner as the scam above.

It is important, now more than ever, to be aware of ongoing scams and be prepared as much as possible to combat such attempts. To help safeguard yourself, review your credit reports often. For the next year, you can check your reports every week for free through AnnualCreditReport.com. This can help you spot any new fraud quickly.

Ignore any unknown numbers that call you. You don’t have to answer the phone. Sometimes potential scam victims get emotional or feel stuck because of a particularly aggressive scammer on the other side of the phone. They want you to stay on the line, they might even make threats to keep you on the line, but despite what the scammer wants you to believe, you are in control of the situation. If someone is threatening or frightening you, hang up and call the police.

If you receive an unexpected e-mail, check for misspellings or grammatical errors. If you weren’t expecting an e-mail, don’t click links or download attachments. Scammers often use fake links and attachments to install malicious software on your computer in this process called “phishing.” 

If you get benefits you never applied for, report it to your state unemployment agency, and ask for instructions. Don’t respond to any calls, emails, or text messages telling you to wire money, send cash, or put money on gift cards. Your state agency will never tell you to repay money that way. Anyone who tells you to do those things is a scammer. Every time.

If you think you've been scammed, have been a victim of fraud, or are wondering if something is legitimate, please contact us at 800-423-1602. We are here to help.

Online resources to check out:

https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/features/scam-alerts

https://www.usa.gov/common-scams-frauds#item-214623

https://www.bbb.org/article/news-releases/22128-scam-alert-this-venmo-scam-sends-you-money-by-accident

Shopping online? Click here for an article and video with some useful tips on how to keep your data secure.

0 comments

Contact Us
Back to Top