Guest Contributor

A recent AARP survey found that twice as many veterans are scammed as civilians. These scams can take many forms including fake employment opportunities, false charities, COVID-19 scams, or convincing veterans to sign over future income in exchange for a large lump sum payment.  

Here’s how veterans can be vigilant:

Don’t Give Personal Information: Don’t give any personal information over the phone. This includes credit cards, bank information, and Social Security numbers. You may receive a check-in from the VA by phone, email, or text, but if you doubt its legitimacy, verify by calling the VA at 1‑800‑827‑1000.

Don’t Feel Pressured: If you are dealing with a legitimate company, they will not pressure you to act before you have a chance to think it over. 

Don’t Pay: If you have to pay upfront to get the job or your personal military records, it’s a scam.

Consult a Trusted Source: Discuss any financial decision with a trusted family member, friend, or your local veterans affairs office before acting.

Research and Get References: Always do your due diligence before you sign anything. Get references and ask questions. Verify information with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs at https://www.va.gov/.

Sources: va.gov and AARP