By Suzanne Monaghan

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Consumers are being warned not to fall for various Ebola schemes targeting people looking for information, cures, and charities.

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Both the Better Business Bureau and AARP have issued fraud alerts.

Panic is a scammer’s best friend, says Mary Bach, chair of AARP Pennsylvania’s Consumer Issues Task Force.  “Scammers prey on fears during the very worst of circumstances.”

Bach says her group is seeing phony e-mails and links on social media claiming to have the latest news on the Ebola crisis which are actually links to malware.  Bogus charities and sales of phony drugs to prevent or cure the disease are also becoming more common.

“If anybody is asking you for personal, private information, any kind of banking information, your Social Security number, you just simply need to hang up the phone on them,” she says.  And don’t reply to any e-mails asking for that information.

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“The scammers use every situation that they can muster in order to get their hand into your wallet or bank account.”

Notify police if you suspect you’ve been targeted.


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