Don’t throw out that envelope with the Treasury Department seal on the outside

Example of an envelope used by the Internal Revenue Service to send out stimulus payment debit cards to 8 million Americans. | From Idaho Attorney General’s Office

BOISE (Idaho Statesman) – Did you receive a debit card in the mail that you suspect may be a scam? Don’t throw it away.

The Internal Revenue Service mailed 8 million debit cards to Americans loaded with Covid-19 stimulus payments. According to the IRS, the cards were authorized by the U.S. Treasury Department and issued by MetaBank.

The cards were mailed in a white envelope containing a Treasury Department seal. The card has a Visa logo and a MetaBank logo on the back.

Eight million people will receive their $600 stimulus checks by prepaid debit card, and the Internal Revenue Service said they’ve already been sent out. | Courtesy IRS

A number of people contacted the Idaho Attorney General’s Office this week after receiving cards and asking if they were real. The AG’s Consumer Protection Division determined they appeared to be legitimate.

“I commend Idahoans for being vigilant about scams and recognizing this situation is out of the ordinary,” Attorney General Lawrence Wasden said in a news release. “But it appears these cards are legitimate and one of the ways the federal government is delivering the latest stimulus payments.”

Wasden said it’s a good idea to take unsolicited communications with a “healthy dose of skepticism and then do any necessary research.”

“It’s always better to be safe than sorry,” he said.