Beware of Emails Promising a Third Stimulus Check, FTC Says


The emails are impersonating the IRS and soliciting personal and financial information.

Online scammers are crafting forging fake emails offering recipients a third COVID-19 stimulus check in the latest suspected malware attack, the Federal Trade Commission said on Tuesday.

Imitating an Internal Revenue Service email format, the message reportedly says that users can get a third Economic Impact Payment similar to the stimulus checks authorized by the federal government during the COVID-19 pandemic. The emails contain a link that allows the recipient to “access the form for your additional information” and fill out an application, officials said.

FTC officials say that this email is not sanctioned by the U.S. government, and that it is likely a bid for an online scammer to steal recipient’s money and possibly their personal data.

“The link is a trick,” FTC officials wrote. “If you click it, a scammer might steal your money and your personal information to commit identity theft. It’s yet another version of the classic government impersonator scam.”

Scam emails can be spotted if a user is contacted by someone claiming to be the federal government on social media platforms, or if one of these accounts requests personal or financial information.

The FTC encourages people to report government impersonators perpetuating fraudulent emails to 

Scammers have impersonated government agencies like the U.S. Trading Commission earlier this year, with scams exploiting the COVID-19 pandemic having proliferated since 2020.