Oklahomans are receiving letters in the mail saying they’re approved for unemployment benefits without even applying. But others are finding out the hard way someone has filed under their own name.
“Had I not even tried to file, I would have no idea that someone was already getting benefits under my name,” said Karen, who lost her job this week and is unable to file for unemployment.
Karen is a recent addition to the long list of Oklahomans who are now dealing with unemployment fraud. She tried to file for unemployment earlier this week.
“Only to find out when I put in my Social Security number to file for it, it asked for a pin right after, meaning someone had already filed under my Social Security number,” Karen said.
Other Oklahomans are receiving letters from the OESC, alerting them to fraudulent claims.
Some employees here at KFOR received them too, even Attorney General Mike Hunter.
“A lot of this stuff is occurring from overseas. That’s gonna be a long path to try and hold these people accountable and maybe get some of this money back,” Hunter said.
OESC Interim Director Shelley Zumwalt is asking those affected to contact their fraud department.
“You should definitely do that so we can stop that claim,” Zumwalt said.
Zumwalt was unable to elaborate on exactly how the scam artists are getting your information…
But where is the money going? We’ve learned the debit cards could be sent to an address set up by the scam artist, who in turn is cashing in.
Zumwalt says the only way anyone should be able to access your unemployment funds is from the debit card sent from the OESC.
“Direct deposit is only done from the card. You have to use the card to get direct deposit. That is a fraud safety there,” Zumwalt said.
Both the attorney general and the OESC recommend investing in a credit monitoring system. The attorney general is also asking fraud victims to fill out a form on his website, which you can access by clicking here.