DWD issues fraud alert to unemployment insurance claimants

INDIANAPOLIS (June 16, 2020)  – The Indiana Department of Workforce Development (DWD) is issuing a fraud alert to notify those who have filed for unemployment insurance benefits in 2020 that they need to protect their personal information from potential scammers.

The U.S. Department of Labor Office of Inspector General has discovered that scammers are sending emails in an effort to steal claimants’ passwords, account numbers, and/or Social Security numbers. With this information they can gain access to email, bank, or other accounts.

The scammers are sending emails using the names of companies or individuals familiar to claimants. They use familiar icons, folder names, and programs to trick claimants into providing their personal information to them.

Claimants can protect themselves by hovering over the links scammers include in the emails, but not clicking on it, to see where it will take them. Most scammers will use a URL shortened to hide the website’s true identity. You can also call the sender to inquire if the email is legitimate.

The links send the victim to a webpage, which looks like a Microsoft SharePoint website. It further requires the user to sign-in using a Google, Microsoft, Apple, Yahoo! or other user account.

Once you have signed into a personal account, the scammers will obtain your username and password. They will have access to the files you have stored online and your contact lists. They may use this contact list to send the same scam email to your friends and family.

The scammers may use your personal information to collect unemployment insurance in your name or change your bank account number to one of their own.

DWD does NOT require claimants to use a secondary account to sign into its online filing system (Uplink).

To report an allegation of fraud involving unemployment, please visit the DWD’s fraud reporting webpage at www.Unemployment.IN.gov and click on “Report Unemployment Fraud.”

About Brian Scott

I play on the radio from 7 am -1 pm weekdays on 98.9 WYRZ and WYRZ.org. Follow me on twitter @WYRZBrianScott or e-mail me at brian@wyrz.org.

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