Beware Crooked Contact Tracers

If someone claiming to be a contact tracer asks you for money or requests your Social Security number, that’s a red flag.

(Image credit: Getty Images)

As the COVID-19 pandemic spreads to communities throughout the U.S., the epidemic of coronavirus-related fraud continues unabated. What to watch out for:

Bogus contact tracers. Contact tracers, who are employed by state health departments, are an important tool in controlling the spread of COVID-19. Legitimate tracers may contact you via phone, e-mail, text or in person to find out names of people you’ve been in contact with and places you’ve visited. But if someone claiming to be a contact tracer asks you for money, or requests your Social Security number or financial information, the individual is a con artist, the Federal Trade Commission says.

Subscribe to Kiplinger’s Personal Finance

Be a smarter, better informed investor.

Save up to 74%

Sign up for Kiplinger’s Free E-Newsletters

Profit and prosper with the best of expert advice on investing, taxes, retirement, personal finance and more - straight to your e-mail.

Profit and prosper with the best of expert advice - straight to your e-mail.

Sign up

To continue reading this article
please register for free

This is different from signing in to your print subscription

Why am I seeing this? Find out more here

Sandra Block
Senior Editor, Kiplinger's Personal Finance

Block joined Kiplinger in June 2012 from USA Today, where she was a reporter and personal finance columnist for more than 15 years. Prior to that, she worked for the Akron Beacon-Journal and Dow Jones Newswires. In 1993, she was a Knight-Bagehot fellow in economics and business journalism at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. She has a BA in communications from Bethany College in Bethany, W.Va.