NASHVILLE, TN.- President Donald Trump. Joe Biden. November 2020. Campaign mode is in full swing and politicians want you by their side. Sadly, scammers know this too.
Right now, in Middle Tennessee, we haven’t seen a whole lot, but we do know in 2016, we saw millions of dollars taken from consumers for fake campaigns. Anything that a scammer can do to get your attention and to buy into something is what they’re going to use,” Caleb Nix, Spokesperson for the BBB of Middle Tennessee and Southern KY said.
One way scammers are doing that is through political donation scams, using the internet and your support to get your money.
“We’re going to see a lot more of this pick up, because we’re going to have people going door to door, people getting advertisements on social media. And with all of those, you need to be careful,” Nix said.
It’s not just door to door ad’s.
Scammers are also using text messages. These messages were sent to News 4 from a viewer.
If you see a text message like this, the BBB says do not click on it. It could be a scammer’s way of sending you to either a bogus website, or grab your personal information.
“There is a fact that it could have malware attached to it and download it onto your phone --which could lead to some issues, especially if you have passwords on your phone or if you’re using your phone for banking or any of those sort of things,” Nix said.
So what can you do?
“One thing we tell people is make sure you go to the actual campaign website. The official website for that person. Cause they’ll have the most up to date information. They’ll have the most up to date donation availability,” Nix said.
The same goes if someone rings your doorbell.
“Even if someone comes to your door-- and is in person and trying to ask for donations for a political campaign, still just go to the main website, cause there’s no real way for you to tell that that person is legitimately representing that candidate,” Nix said.
Remember, it’s not just the national campaigns, local election donation scams are often used to grab your money as well. Make sure you campaign directly before you hand over your cash.