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Scammers seize on US election, but it's not votes they want

Scam Alert graphic
Posted at 1:16 AM, Oct 17, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-17 01:16:06-04

PROVIDENCE, R.I. — Scam artists are taking notice as American voters face an especially polarized November election.

The FBI and the Better Business Bureau and cybersecurity experts have warned of new and increasingly sophisticated online fraud schemes tied to the U.S. presidential election and pivotal Senate races.

They say scammers are posing as fundraisers, PACS and pollsters, impersonating candidates and campaigns, and launching fake voter registration drives.

It’s not votes they’re after, but to steal personal and financial information from voters.

The chief security officer at one digital security firm says the scripts vary, but “psychologically, these scams play to our desire to do something, to get involved, to donate, to take action.”

Key Dates and Deadlines

Thursday, Sept. 24: Early voting begins, absentee ballots begin being mailed
Monday, Oct. 19: Online, postmarked-by voter registration deadline
Tuesday, Oct. 20 through 8 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 3: In-person registration allowed with local clerk
Friday, Oct. 30 at 5 p.m.: Deadline to request absentee ballot by mail
Monday, Nov. 2: Absentee/mail-in postmarked-by deadline
Tuesday, Nov. 3: In-person voting