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Iowa Attorney General: Beware of coronavirus stimulus check scams

The Iowa Attorney General's Office warns that scammers could attempt to steal coronavirus stimulus checks as Americans already begin to receive direct payments.

IOWA, USA — Editor's Note: The attached video was originally published Jan. 1, 2021.

The Iowa Attorney General's Office is warning that scammers could attempt to steal coronavirus stimulus checks as Americans already begin to receive direct relief payments. 

The attorney general's office noted in a statement that no government agency will require an individual to pay to receive their stimulus check. The government also will not call, text, email or contact someone on social media asking for a Social Security number or credit card and bank account information. 

The Federal Trade Commission said anyone who asks for any of this kind of information is a scammer. 

“Scammers follow the headlines, and they’ll take advantage of our excitement, confusion, and other emotions,” Attorney General Tom Miller said in the statement.

Nursing home residents on Medicaid can also receive COVID-19 relief funding, which will not be counted as income. Those receiving Medicaid must notify the Iowa Department of Human Services when they receive the payment, the attorney general's office noted. Nursing homes cannot claim resident's payments.

The stimulus check could be a direct deposit into your bank account, a paper check or an Economic Impact Payment (EIP) debit card.

Those that lost their EIP card can learn what to do here.

If you think you may have been a victim of fraud, contact the Iowa Attorney General's Consumer Protection Division or call 888-777-4590.

COVID-19 fraud can also be reported to the FBI at 1-800-CALL-FBI or the Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General  at 1-800-HHS-TIPS.