Don't be fooled by government scams

You may have heard of a phone fraud case in which someone pretends to be an agent of a domestic tax office trying to scare you into paying a tax holiday. But another scam takes a less dangerous approach: calling the free funds provided by the government.

Of course, you have to pay a fee to get the money.

This is called a government subsidy scam. This is part of a larger category of so-called imposters. In this scam, a person pretends to be an authoritative person in order to get a person's money. It is tempting to believe those who want to give you money but are not fooled. The following are expectations of the liar.

How to avoid subsidy fraud

Don't fall in love with fake numbers or friends. It's easy to create deceptive phone numbers and Facebook profiles. Don't let a Washington DC area code or a familiar name and face win your trust on social media. Pay close attention to what is actually provided and what you are asking for in return.

Watch out for phone calls and Facebook messages. The US government will never provide you with a phone or social network, and will never apply. Todaro said: "If the only way to communicate with someone who provides funding is through social media or text, it is a dangerous signal."

Do not pay with a gift card, debit card or anything. You never need to pay for government assistance with a gift card or a prepaid debit card. It is illegal to apply for federal funding to request payment.

Check the name of this institution. There are no institutions like the Federal Grants Management or the Federal Appropriations Department. The US Department of Health and Human Services says all grants need to be requested through government websites such as