Southampton Town Police would like to alert the community that there is a nationwide attempt to defraud many states’ unemployment insurance programs. This scheme has targeted people around the country, including some in Southampton Town. In an attempt to defraud the government, criminals file false claims in the employees’ names in the hope of receiving unemployment payments from the state. The employees are not part of the scheme and in some cases may never know that their names have been used fraudulently. However, the Town has received reports from community members that they have received unemployment benefits that they did not apply for. If you receive any notification that an unauthorized unemployment application has been applied for in your name, it is very important that you take the proper steps to alert the authorities about this fraud.
If you receive any communications from your state unemployment program about qualifying or being approved for benefits, and you did not file for any benefits, please take the following actions:
- Notify your payroll representative.
- Complete the online reporting form at on.ny.gov/uifraud
- Call your local police department to report the Identity Theft
Please note that even after you have reported the fraud to NYSDOL, you may still receive correspondence from them. The correspondence may even include a bank card or an Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) card.
Investigators believe that the criminals are using data from breaches in years past to obtain the names, Social Security numbers, and other information.
Most investigators do not believe that the employees whose names were used fraudulently are at any risk of having their own money stolen through this scheme. However, if you receive notification that unemployment benefits have been filed in your name, you may want to take some additional steps to protect yourself against identity theft. The Federal Trade Commission has put together a webpage with all of their recommendations of ways employees can protect their information. You can access that webpage at the following link: https://www.identitytheft.gov/UnemploymentInsurance
These recommendations will reduce the risk that your information could be misused if it has been stolen. As we become aware of additional significant information about this scheme, we will provide further updates.
For more information on this fraudulent activity, you may read the press release that NYSDOL at https://www.labor.ny.gov/pressreleases/2021/february-02-2021.shtm
WHAT TO DO TO PREVENT BECOMING A VICTIM:
- DO NOT PROVIDE ANY PERSONAL INFORMATION OVER THE PHONE (I.E. SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER, BIRTHDATE, MAIDEN NAMES)
- DO NOT PROVIDE ANY BANK INFORMATION
- DO NOT PROVIDE CREDIT CARD INFORMATION OVER THE PHONE
- CHECK YOUR CREDIT REPORT ONCE A YEAR, IT’S FREE TO YOU
WHAT TO DO IF YOU ARE A VICTIM:
CALL YOUR LOCAL POLICE DEPARTMENT AND FILE A REPORT PROVIDE ANY DOCUMENTATION OR INFORMATION THAT YOU HAVE RECEIVED TO THE OFFICER.