This scam goes by many names including ‘federal government grant scams’, ‘free government grant scam’, ‘free grant money scam’, or even ‘us government grant scam’.
This scam is not only know by many names, it is also very famous for being such a scam.
Yearly News Reports
This scam is so famous and so old that most news stations in the U.S. have yearly news reports on these scams.
This scam is one of a few that get yearly news coverage because of it’s appeal of ‘free money’ and the fact that people still fall for it in the era of instant information.
Government Grant Scams: Exposed
This article is going to expose the scam that goes by many names:’federal government grant scams’, ‘free government grant scam’, ‘free grant money scam’ & ‘us government grant scam’.
This article will explain how this scam works, tips to avoid this scam, information to legitimate U.S. Government agencies that deal with grants, & information on how/where to report a ‘free’ government grant scam.
One Last Thing…
If you have any questions at anytime on the subject of ‘free government grant scams’ please leave them in the comments down below.
Also please like and share this information over social media, the more people that know about it the less people will be scammed this year.
Government Grant Scams Exposed!
This scam is know by many names, but it’s operation is pretty straight forward regardless of the ‘latest name’ it’s known by. There are many methods the scammers use to contact you to tell you about this scam
However, it doesn’t matter the method of contact they all offer the same story: You Qualify For ‘Free’ Government Grant Money.
Let me walk you through this scam process so when you get contacted by these scammers you know what to look out for.
(1) You Hear About The ‘Offer’
In this first step you hear about the ‘offer’ for ‘free government grant money’. The most common methods of contact involve receiving a phone call, a letter, or coming across an ad or a ‘pop-up’ online.
Government Grant Scam Calls
This is the most common way that people find out about this scam.
The scammers contact you claiming to be from the U.S. Government ‘grant department’ or some other ‘official’ sounding government agency.
Some scammers have even gotten clever enough to fool caller IDs by re-routing and disguising the phone number to appear to come from Washington D.C.
‘Free’ Grant Money Scam Letter
Another common method of contact is to send an ‘official’ looking ‘government letter’ to you to tell you that you ‘qualify’ for ‘free government money’. The letter will usually feature common scam elements:
- You ‘qualify’ for ‘free’ U.S. Government money
- Use the money for ‘bills’, ‘student loans’, or ‘travel the world’
- Please contact us at this ‘1-800’ number
- You never have to ‘pay back’ any of the amount
Free Government Grant Scam Ads
Another method of contact; that is getting increasingly popular; is to run across an ‘ad’ that advertises ‘free government grants’.
These ads appear almost everywhere, including trusted sites.
They usually appear in the ‘ad area’ of the page or they may even suddenly ‘pop up’ while you are on a legit site. Either way they advertise that you can get ‘free money’ by just clicking on a ‘link’ and ‘fill in your personal information’.
Ads In Newspapers/Magazines Too
This is not as popular as it once was, but another place people come across this scam is in their local newspaper or magazine. The ads are usually in the ‘Classified’ section of the newspaper and in the assorted ads in the magazine.
Don’t trust ‘free’ government money ads in newspapers or magazines, they are not what you think they are.
Some People Believe The Scam
After the scammers contact you and tell all about the ‘free government grant money’ some people figure out it’s a scam and move on, but then there are those who believe it to be real & they move on to Step 2.
(2) Scammer Follows Script
For people who believe this scam to be real the next thing they will do is do a follow-up phone call if they received a ‘pop-up ad’ or a letter (If you receive a phone call this step blends in with step 1).
The script involved in this scam generally follows the following pattern:
- The scammer will tell their name and that they are from the ‘Federal Grants Administration’ or the ‘Grant Department’ or some other official government sounding agency.
- Then you will be congratulated on your ‘eligibility’ for the ‘program and the scammer will walk you through the program and how it will ‘help you’.
- The scammer will then ask for your financial information. They will tell you that you need to pay a small ‘processing fee’ and then the ‘money will be ‘deposited the grant directly into your account’.
- The scammer assures the person that if they are ‘not satisfied’ that there is a ‘refund policy’.
(3) Personal Info Is Given To Scammer
After the scammer plays politician and tells you all that you want to hear, they will ask for the information once again.
At this time the people who believe this scam to legit give over their personal information.
This is the worst thing that you can do. You never give your personal information over the phone to a person claiming to be from the ‘government’.
If they are truly from the government they already have your information, why would they need it again?
(4) Scammer Takes A ‘Fee’
Now that you have given the scammer your ‘personal info’; including financial information; the scammer then takes a ‘fee’. The amount is only limited by how much is in your account that determines what the scammer takes.
The amounts generally are over $100 and can range into the $1000s, but the amount does not matter. What does matter is that you ain’t gonna see that money again, it’s gone!
It’s at this point that the people who believed it to be true begin to question the legitimacy and that is when Step 5 happens.
(5) Scammer Vanishes
When the person begins to question the legitimacy of the ‘free government grant money’, that is the scammers cue to vanish.
All the scammer has to do is block the number, email, or another method of contact and move on to the next victim. After the scammer ‘vanishes’ a trail of financial loss, sadness, embarrassment, and even depression in their wake.
You Ever Gotten A Call?
Have you ever gotten a call from someone claiming to be from the ‘government’ telling you about ‘free government grants’? If so please post your story in the comments down below.
5 Rules To Avoid Government Grant Scams
These rules will not stop all of the ‘government grant scams’ from getting to you, but these rules will help to see right through the scammers lies!
Rule 1: Don’t Give Out Your Personal Info
This may seem like common sense, but how many people put down their Social Security Numbers on paper applications for a job (You’re not required to give a SS# to an employer until hired, federal statute.).
Now in the digital age it is more important then ever to guard your personal information. Don’t give any of your personal info out to anyone you don’t know.
Ask For Legal Disclosure/Legal Citations
If someone tells you to give them your personal information ask for the legal disclosure paperwork or legal references.
Legit U.S. Federal agencies will provide those resources and more, they will offer all the disclosure and help you need. Scammers will not do that.
Rule 2: Don’t Pay For ‘Free’ Government Grants
If the letter, phone call, or ad says ‘free’ government grants, why would the government need you to pay them a ‘processing fee’ or ‘fees’ to get ‘free’ money?
It Doesn’t Make Sense
It doesn’t make sense and legit U.S. Government grants are available and they are FREE. I will be providing a link to the official U.S. Government’s Grant website near the end of this article.
Bottom line, don’t pay for anything that person says is free. if they want you to pay it’s either a scam or it’s false advertising.
Rule 3: Verify Information You’re Given
Just because the caller on the other end claims that they are an employee of the U.S. government and work in the ‘Federal Grants Administration’ does not mean it’s true.
The above ‘administration’ DOES NOT EXIST!
It is important that you verify every piece of information that is given to you by these scammers.
Google The Info
A quick Google search ‘federal grants administration’ will turn up numerous articles on this scam, but no .gov site that mentions this administration.
You can also skim through the ‘Blue Pages’ of a phone directory and you will find no administration by that name.
No Verification, No Business
If any information you receive comes up as false immediately stop communication and report the number, person and scam to the proper authorities.
Toward the end of this article I will also be including a link to information on how and where to report this type of scam.
Rule 4: Don’t Trust Caller ID
A lot of scammers have become aware of Caller ID and how it works. As a result some scammers have adjusted their operations to disguise the numbers to appear that they are coming from Washington D.C..
Just because the ID says it’s from D.C. does not mean it is from there.
Verify the information including the phone number that comes up on your phone. If the area code is not from D.C. that’s a red flag.
Rule 5: Enroll In The Do Not Call Registry
A great way to avoid this scam is to enroll in the National Do Not Call Registry.
This registry was created by Congress as a way for Americans to ‘opt out’ of the telemarketing phone calls that where costing Americans millions.
Enrolling in this registry will not stop all scammers or scam calls, but it will REDUCE them greatly. You can enroll two ways:
- Call 1-888-382-1222
- Visit donotcall.gov
This number and site can also be used to report unwanted calls. This list gets updated every so often by acts of Congress and by people calling and reporting scam numbers, so don’t be afraid to call and report a number.
Legitimate U.S. Government Grants
In the U.S. there are legitimate U.S. Government grants available to the American people from various U.S. government such as the Department of Defense & Small Business Administration.
There are over 3,000 possible grants available to people in the United States and all you have to do to begin seeing what grants you may qualify for is to visit www.grants.gov.
No Other Site Is Legit
Grants.gov is the only legitimate U.S. Government website where you can APPLY for grants. You may not qualify for any, you may qualify for all, but you must still apply there.
Apply nowhere else when it comes to U.S. Government Grants.
Report Government Grant Scam Calls
If you suspect that you are being scammed or have been scammed by a ‘free government grant money scam’ you need to report it to the proper authorities.
To learn and begin the process please click ‘Report A Scam‘.
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