Rumor control and being aware of possible scams and fraud are important during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Federal Emergency Management Agency has compiled a number of rumors that are circulating in these times and facts to correct them. Additionally, several government agencies and departments have put out resources to keep the public aware of possible scams and frauds related to COVID-19. To help stop the spread of rumors, try to find trusted sources, share information from trusted sources and discourage others from sharing information from unverified sources. COVID-19 related scams and frauds may also be reported to help prevent anyone from becoming a victim to predators attempting to profit from this pandemic. Below is a list of rumors FEMA has addressed and resources to report fraud and scams. Additionally, if you have any questions about rumors, you may use the email address at the bottom of this page.
Do I need to register with FEMA in order to be considered for COVID-19 help from the U.S. Small Business Administration?
No. If you represent a small business or nonprofit, for information visit the U.S. Small Business Administration’s COVID-19 loan resources page.
Is FEMA seizing medical supplies?
Did FEMA block shipments of ventilators to my state?
FEMA did not block shipments of ventilators to any state. FEMA works with HHS and federal partners to coordinate distribution of medical supplies and personal protective equipment (PPE), from multiple sources including the Strategic National Stockpile, private industry donations, federal interagency allocation, and vendor procurements. These shipments are being sent with prioritization given to the areas with greatest need.
Is 5G cellphone technology linked To the cause of Coronavirus?
Is FEMA deploying the military?
Is DHS deploying the National Guard?
On March 22, President Trump directed the Secretary of Defense to permit full federal reimbursement, by FEMA, for some states’ use of their National Guard forces. The President’s action provides Governors continued command of their National Guard forces, while being federally funded under Title 32. Each state’s National Guard is still under the authority of the Governor and is working in concert with the Department of Defense.
I got a call, text, or email saying I could get financial help. Is it legitimate?
Are there any vaccines to prevent or medicines to treat COVID-19?
I’m on Medicare, and someone offered me a COVID-19 test if I provide my medicare information. Should I accept?
If you receive any calls like this, please know that it is a scam to get your private personal information. Beneficiaries are being targeted in a number of ways, including telemarketing calls, social media platforms, and door-to-door visits. Do not give out your Medicare, Medicaid, or Social security numbers. And be cautious about any unsolicited requests for your personal information. If you think you need to be tested for the Coronavirus, please call your doctor, who can advise you on what tests you may need.
Are older people and those with existing conditions the only ones at risk for Coronavirus?
Older adults and people with serious chronic medical conditions are at higher risk of serious illness. But anyone can become sick, and symptoms can range from mild to severe regardless of how old you are or if you have other medical conditions.
Is the government sending everyone money?
A stimulus package has been passed by Congress to help Americans in need. As information becomes available, it will be updated on www.coronavirus.gov. Unfortunately, scammers are using COVID-19 to take advantage of people. Don’t trust anyone who tells you they can get you money now. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has more information about scams, including COVID-19 scams.
Is there a national lockdown or quarantine?
No. States and cities are responsible for announcing curfews, shelters in place, or other restrictions and safety measures.
Should I stock up on food and supplies?
Please only buy what your family needs for a week. Buying weeks or months of supplies in advance leads to shortages and makes it difficult for other families to take care of themselves. Consumer demand has been exceptionally high, especially for groceries, cleaning supplies, and healthcare products. Supply chains haven’t been disrupted, but stores need time to restock.
Should I worry about hantavirus?
No. The main way hantavirus spreads to people is through infected mice and rats. It is possible to catch hantavirus from another person, but it’s extremely rare. For more information about hantavirus, visit the CDC’s website.
How can I know if a charity is a legitimate organization?
What is price gouging?
FEMA's COVID-19 rumor control site.
Will exposing mysef to the sun or high temperatures prevent COVID-19?
You can catch COVID-19, no matter how sunny or hot the weather is. Countries with hot weather have reported cases of COVID-19. To protect yourself, make sure you clean your hands frequently and thoroughly and avoid touching your eyes, mouth, and nose.
Can I recover from COVID-19? Will I have it for the rest of my life?
Most of the people who catch COVID-19 can recover and eliminate the virus from their bodies. If you catch the disease, make sure you treat your symptoms. If you have cough, fever, and difficulty breathing, seek medical care early – but call your health facility by telephone first. Most patients recover thanks to supportive care.
Is holding my breath a good way to see if I have COVID-19?
Does alcohol prevent COVID-19?
Can COVID-19 be transferred to hot or humid climates?
Yes, from the evidence so far, the COVID-19 virus can be transmitted in ALL AREAS, including areas with hot and humid weather. Regardless of climate, adopt protective measures if you live in, or travel to an area reporting COVID-19. The best way to protect yourself against COVID-19 is by frequently cleaning your hands. By doing this you eliminate viruses that may be on your hands and avoid infection that could occur by then touching your eyes, mouth, and nose.
Can cold weather or snow kill COVID-19?
There is no reason to believe that cold weather can kill the new coronavirus or other diseases. The normal human body temperature remains around 36.5°C to 37°C, regardless of the external temperature or weather. The most effective way to protect yourself against the new coronavirus is by frequently cleaning your hands with alcohol-based hand rub or washing them with soap and water.
Will taking a hot bath prevent COVID-19?
Taking a hot bath will not prevent you from catching COVID-19. Your normal body temperature remains around 36.5°C to 37°C, regardless of the temperature of your bath or shower. Actually, taking a hot bath with extremely hot water can be harmful, as it can burn you. The best way to protect yourself against COVID-19 is by frequently cleaning your hands. By doing this you eliminate viruses that may be on your hands and avoid infection that could occur by then touching your eyes, mouth, and nose.
Can I get COVID-19 from a mosquito?
To date there has been no information nor evidence to suggest that the new coronavirus could be transmitted by mosquitoes. The new coronavirus is a respiratory virus which spreads primarily through droplets generated when an infected person coughs or sneezes, or through droplets of saliva or discharge from the nose. To protect yourself, clean your hands frequently with an alcohol-based hand rub or wash them with soap and water. Also, avoid close contact with anyone who is coughing and sneezing.
Are hand dryers effective in killing the new coronavirus?
No. Hand dryers are not effective in killing the 2019-nCoV. To protect yourself against the new coronavirus, you should frequently clean your hands with an alcohol-based hand rub or wash them with soap and water. Once your hands are cleaned, you should dry them thoroughly by using paper towels or a warm air dryer.
Can an ultraviolet disinfection lamp kill the new coronavirus?
UV lamps should not be used to sterilize hands or other areas of skin as UV radiation can cause skin irritation.
How effective are thermal scanners in detecting people infected with the new coronavirus?
Can spraying alcohol or chlorine all over your body kill the new coronavirus?
No. Spraying alcohol or chlorine all over your body will not kill viruses that have already entered your body. Spraying such substances can be harmful to clothes or mucous membranes (i.e. eyes, mouth). Be aware that both alcohol and chlorine can be useful to disinfect surfaces, but they need to be used under appropriate recommendations.
Do vaccines against pneumonia protect you against the new coronavirus?
Can regularly rinsing your nose with saline help prevent infection with the new coronavirus?
Can eating garlic help prevent infection with the new coronavirus?
Garlic is a healthy food that may have some antimicrobial properties. However, there is no evidence from the current outbreak that eating garlic has protected people from the new coronavirus.
Are antibiotics effective in preventing and treating the new coronavirus?
Beware of COVID-19 related scams
U.S. Department of Homeland Securiety Cyber Infrastructure Insights
After the initial outbreak of COVID-19, disinformation campaigns appeared online. Information manipulation and fabrication about COVID-19’s origin, scale, government response, and/or prevention and treatment surged as creators leveraged people’s increased uncertainty.