Watch out: the pandemic offers a world of new criminal opportunities


The FBI warns the pandemic has opened up a whole new world of opportunities for criminals. Officials say crooks are taking advantage at "breathtaking speed."

Cully Stimson is a lawyer and a crime expert at the Heritage Foundation. He says his neighbors in Virginia got a surprise.

"Their mailboxes are being rifled through, looking for checks in the mail."

Stimson says criminals never let a crisis go to waste.

"When things like this happen, whether it's a massive fire or a flood or a huge situation that affects the whole country, the criminal element is going to do what it can to exploit the vulnerabilities and the cracks in the seams."

The FBI says crooks have posed as doctors trying to collect payments and they've created bogus web sites and phone apps trying to steal financial information.

Stimson says even when they're caught, criminals are being allowed to stay on the streets.

"Most cities are not taking people into jail and temporarily housing them in jail and so they're getting written citations, notifications on a piece of paper, to show up, when normally they'd be booked into the city or county jail."

Stimson says while it's true the pandemic has made home burglaries more difficult -- because we're home -- business break-ins may be easier.


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