The state Department of Labor is reminding residents to be careful of text scams that include links to fake websites that look like unemployment pages.
The department said some of these links appear to be the unemployment benefits login page, but it's really just a scam. Text messages that seem to be coming from the DOL may read "Connecticut's Department of Labor warn your account is abnormal" or "Your unemployment is updated. Log in to view."
DOL officials said they've seen several variations of the messages with links to fraudulent sites.
“The agency did not send these. The texts themselves have several hallmarks of a scam, but the biggest red flag is that CTDOL does not communicate about individual claims over text," Commissioner Dante Bartolomeo said.
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"Identity theft and phishing are significant 21st century problems that everyone must stay vigilant about. Claimants might not think twice about putting their personal identifying information in an email or posting on social media that they are a claimant having problems, but that gives criminals enough information to potentially hijack their identities. It’s a very serious concern and one that we constantly warn our filers to be aware of," Bartolomeo continued.
If you think your personal information may have been compromised, you're asked to contact local law enforcement. If you think an unemployment claim has been filed using your identity, you can report it to the DOL.
For more information on DOL text scams, click here.
To best maintain your account and keep it secure, experts recommend taking the following steps:
- Use different passwords for your social media, banking, email and other accounts.
- Change your passwords regularly.
- Use strong passwords—upper and lowercase letters, symbols, possibly a short phrase in lieu of a single word, and stay away from dictionary words.
- Monitor your accounts—if you had an email breach, other accounts may also be compromised.