COLUMBUS (WCMH) — Ohio Lt. Gov. Jon Husted discussed the issue of unemployment fraud during Tuesday’s coronavirus press briefing. He said roughly 3,000 fraudulent claims have been made in Ohio by criminals who are filing for unemployment on behalf of real people who haven’t lost their jobs.
“Unfortunately, there are some people out there who tried to take advantage of others during this crisis,” Husted said. “The Ohio Department of Jobs and Family Services is working to secure your tax dollars and benefits that are due to you and not to fraudsters.”
Husted said the state of Washington flagged 190,000 fraudulent claims totaling $650 million in unemployment insurance.
Husted added official-looking notices are going out claiming to be from the government. He said the claims tell people they have been over-paid by an unemployment check or by a stimulus check and they need to return that money immediately.
“They’re asking for personal information in an attempt to defraud you,” Husted said. “Ohioans, if you have any of these things that you are aware of and you receive information or if there’s a fake unemployment claim that’s filed on your behalf, make sure that you check it out . . . that you call ODJFS to alert them to this.”
Husted said other forms of fraud include people offering fake cures, fake work-at-home offers and messages asking for personal financial information.
Husted said TransUnion, a credit bureau, ran a survey showing 29 percent of consumers were targets of digital fraud related to the coronavirus.