A Leftover COVID-19 Scam: Fake High School Sports Streaming Sites

Last Updated: April 17, 2024By Tags: , , , , ,

The COVID-19 pandemic spawned many scams at its height, but a few linger on and this includes the high school sports streaming sites scam.

During those moribund days of lockdowns and social distancing, streaming services offered not only the opportunity to connect with other people, but also the opportunity to view the few sporting events still allowed. Thanks to the popularity and convenience of watching streaming sporting events from a distance, you can watch from afar your grandchildren, nieces, or nephews play sports in another city or state. These legitimate streaming outlets are usually sanctioned and approved by the school and are free. However, scam streaming apps are now flooding social media just before various events, posting about streaming the particular game you’re interested in watching.

Here’s how they draw you in: The fraudsters often mention specific information about the game, which can be simply the names of key student athletes participating in the event. They’re hoping to build some measure of confidence in you that you’re dealing with the real deal, hoping to build credibility. Don’t be fooled. “Sometimes the athletes resend the messages, not realizing they’re scams,” says Mark Koski, vice president of the NFHS Network, a paid service that streams games from high schools.

Once the scammers have you convinced that they are legit, at game time, you click on the link they provide, then enter your credit card information. But you won’t be viewing the sporting event that you were looking forward to — in fact, you won’t see anything at all and you’ll never see your money again. Here’s the worst of it (yes, it gets worse): these scammers not only have your money, but with your personal ID info at hand, they are now free to add additional charges to your credit card.

What you can do to protect yourself

Contact the high school before a game and ask how you can stream it, recommends the Better Business Bureau. More information from the BBB here.

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