A growing number of scammers are using other people’s identities to claim unemployment benefits, according to Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill.
The scammers are stealing personal information such as birthdates, Social Security numbers, and home addresses and routing payments to accounts over which the scammers have control.
“These deceivers steal the identities of others, who are generally employed, in order to file fraudulent claims,” Attorney General Hill said. “If someone uses your name in this fashion, you may learn about it from your employer or from the Indiana Department of Workforce Development, which processes unemployment claims. In many cases, payments may already have been regularly deposited into someone else’s account by the time you learn of the fraud.”
Between Oct. 18 and Nov. 18, the Office of the Attorney General received 157 complaints of unemployment-related identity theft.
Attorney General Hill said scammers appear to be targeting the identities of people they know are busy working during the coronavirus pandemic, such as doctors, nurses, and other healthcare workers.
If you learn that your identity has been stolen and used in a claim for unemployment benefits, you should report it to the Office of the Attorney General.
You should also report the incident to the Indiana Department of Workforce Development. Finally, you should file a report with local police and the Indiana State Police, which offers a form that can be filled out and emailed to uifraud@isp.IN.gov.