BALTIMORE, MD—The Maryland State Police and the Maryland Department of Labor Unemployment Division are tracking and combating illegal schemes in which fraudsters are impersonating the Division in email correspondence, text messages, and phone calls with the intent of stealing unemployment insurance benefits.
The Department of Labor is coordinating with Maryland State Police to alert the public about these ongoing and evolving fraud scams.
- Unemployment Insurance fraud is a nationwide challenge that federal and state law enforcement agencies across the country are continuing to combat.
- The latest scheme is to ask legitimate claimants to enter their user ID and password onto fake websites wherein fraudsters then capture the data and use it to steal unemployment benefits.
- Since the beginning of the pandemic, the Maryland Department of Labor has flagged nearly 1.8 million claimants – and 2.3 million total claims – as potentially fraudulent.
The fraudulent text messages are designed to grab a user’s attention and lure them into clicking on a link to provide personal information. Authorities say one common scheme is to ask claimants to enter their User ID and Password, which the scammers then capture and use to divert benefit payments to their own bank accounts.
Anyone who receives an email or text message that appears to be from the Maryland Department of Labor should NOT click on any links in the correspondence.
To help you distinguish between legitimate assistance from Division staff and fraudulent assistance from a potential scammer, please remember the following:
- Division does not provide assistance through text message and will not send any links asking a claimant to verify their account through text.
- Division will never request or require payment for assistance with unemployment insurance.
- Division staff will not provide assistance to claimants through direct message on social media.
- Do not provide any sensitive information related to your Maryland unemployment insurance claim by e-mail unless it is to a @maryland.gov e-mail address.
If you believe that your information has been used to fraudulently file an unemployment insurance claim, please contact the Maryland Department of Labor’s Division of Unemployment Insurance by visiting MDunemployment.com or e-mailing email@example.com. Suspected unemployment insurance fraud should also be reported to the U.S. Department of Labor Office of Inspector General Hotline by visiting their website or by calling 1-800-347-3756.
Follow these steps to protect your information from identity theft. If you believe you have been a victim of identity theft, please do the following:
- Contact your local Police Department or Maryland State Police Barrack in your area to file a police report.
- File a complaint with the Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) online at IC3.gov.
For more information about identity theft, and how to protect yourself please visit:
- Commissioner of Financial Regulation Identity Theft Page
- Maryland Attorney General Identity Theft