Beware of email scams targeting Food and Nutrition Services recipients – OBX Today

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The Dare County Department of Health & Human Services would like to make residents aware of recent fictitious emails that seek to gain personal information from college students who are Food and Nutrition Services (FNS) recipients.

The emails falsely claim that students are automatically eligible for SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) benefits if they are enrolled in the academic year and are eligible for large sums of money if they apply.

One of the emails students could be receiving claims that they would be eligible for a sum of $15,000 via direct deposit or mail if they apply to a link for a “Walmart Post Covid-19 Relief fund.” A second email states that if individuals are interested in the program and are currently in an academic year, they would be eligible for up to $30,000 if they apply.

“We’d like to remind residents that if they are not sure about a suspicious request for Food and Nutrition Services (FNS) information, they need to contact their local agency at 252.475.5500,” said Chuck Lycett, Director of the Dare County Social Services Division. He added that FNS recipients should not share social security numbers, bank information, FNS EBT card or PIN numbers with organizations or individuals they are not familiar with.

Along with contacting their local agency, residents are encouraged to report any suspicious activity or FNS fraud to the USDA Office of the Inspector General at 1-800-424-9121 or online here. To stay on top of potential scams, please visit the USDA’s SNAP scam alert webpage at https://www.fns.usda.gov/snap/scam-alerts.