Becca Kelly Slaughter, Acting Chair of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), validates that the American Rescue Plan is now law. That means a lot of individuals will soon be getting desperately needed economic impact payments of up to fourteen hundred dollars. 

Many individuals have been here before, so they know these funds will come through direct deposit, check, or debit card. The FTC would like to remind you that scammers follow the headlines, too. Here are a few ways to spot a scammer trying to take your money or personal information. 

First, know that nobody in the government will ask you to pay anything up front to get your economic impact payment. There is no way to get your payment faster and there is no form to fill out. That is simply a scam. 

Second, the government will not call, email, text, or message you on social media to ask for your Social Security, bank account, or credit card number. Anyone who does this is a scammer. 

Third, anyone who tells you to pay by money transfer, gift card, or cryptocurrency is a scammer, no matter the reason they say you need to pay. 

If you spot these scams, tell the FTC at Every report helps them try to stop scammers. The FTC will use their enforcement authority to go after scammers who try to take advantage of people awaiting relief. 

To learn more about avoiding pandemic-related scams, visit and help them spread the word. Share these tips and video through your network.  

If you are interested in learning more about protecting yourself from COVID-19 stimulus scams, we encourage you to speak with a Community Resource Specialist: (408) 350-3200 option 1.