The Illinois Department of Employment Security is reporting some astounding numbers related to unemployment fraud.
In a recent article, investigators at the department are reviewing more than 14,000 identity theft claims in the last five months. Last year, during the same time period there were only 651 total claims.
That’s a more than 2,000% increase in reported identity theft complaints to the department.
Residents Are Receiving Unsolicited Debit Cards
Scammers have resorted to exploiting the unemployment process by applying for benefits and using the real addresses of the victims and then requesting the fund dispersed by debit card.
By doing so, the claims appear to be more legitimate since the funds are dispersed to the victim’s real address.
When the debit cards arrive at the victim’s address, they hope that the victim will inadvertently activate the card which will then automatically trigger the funds to be made available on the card.
Once the debit card is activated, the scammers will then contact the victims and claim to be government officials and instruct them to return the cards to them.
This scam is sweeping the country as unemployment fraud continues its dramatic climb upward.