This has happened to me now three times this week... I get a Facebook friend request from someone I'm already friends with. The first time I thought, 'Hm, okay... maybe they just got locked out of their account and started up a brand new one.' Then after a second and third request came in from two other 'friends' I got suspicious. I checked the pages, they had two or three pictures and NO info on their profile. Then, the messages started coming in... Messages that made no sense for coming from that person. So I did some homework...

It turns out the Better Business Bureau has been flooded with similar issues from users all around the U.S. and, it's a scam. What these so called 'friends' want, is to get you to fall for a phony 'free' COVID-19 grant they supposedly are offering. Because you are suppose to think you know the person on the other end, you're more likely to fall for it; or at least that is the scammers hope. The BBB warns if you engage, they'll eventually tell you you'll get some grant money buuuuut you need to for the delivery or processing. If you do that, they keep the 'delivery' or 'processing' bucks you shill out and you get nothing.

If you are ever on the fence, remember - you shouldn't have to pay for a 'free' grant. And, the BBB says a real government agency will not ask you to pay a processing fee if you've been awarded a grant. The only official list of all U.S. federal grant-making agencies is Grants.gov so you can always check them out if you're nervous or something feels wrong. If you know someone who's also had a 'friend' send a new friend request, pass this info along to them as well.

Also, what friend would have your grant money... That seems super weird, too. Be safe out there!

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