Beware the ‘Test and Trace’ Scam.
As with all calls you receive, if you have any doubt as to their legitimacy, end the call immediately and contact Action Fraud, by calling 0300 123 2040. You can also contact them via their website ActionFraud.Police.uk or simply call the Police on 101.
Here’s an example of how a scam call may sound, in this case from someone pretending to be from NHS Test and Trace…
- Scammer: “Good morning, I’m calling from the NHS test and trace service. According to our records, you are likely to have been in close proximity to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19. This means that you now need to self-isolate for 7 days and take a COVID-19 test.”
- Intended victim: “OK. Can you tell me who that person was?”
- Scammer: “I’m not able to tell you that. That is confidential information.’
- Intended victim: ‘Okay?…“
- Scammer: “However, you do need to be tested within the next 72 hours. So, can I just you give me your address so that we can send a testing kit to you?”
- Intended victim: “Ok (gives address)”
- Scammer: “Thank you. Now I just need to take a payment card so that we can finalise this and send on the kit to you.”
- Intended victim: “Sorry, a payment card? I thought this was all free?”
- Scammer: “No, I’m afraid not. There is a fee of £50 for the kit and the test results. Could you please read off the long card number for me, when you’re ready.”
- Intended victim: “No, that’s not right. This is part of the NHS so surely there’s no charge.”
- Scammer: “I’m afraid there is. Please give me your card number, this is very important, and there are penalties for non-compliance.”
- Intended victim: Puts the phone down.
Here’s the advice as shown on the Ofcom.org.uk website regard this scam…
On a genuine call, contact tracers will never:
- ask you to dial a premium rate number (for example, those starting 09 or 087);
- ask you to make any form of payment;
- ask for any details about your bank account;
- ask for your social media identities or login details, or those of your contacts;
- ask you for any passwords or PINs, or ask you to set up any passwords or PINs over the phone;
- ask you to purchase a product – including a test;
- ask you to download any software to your device or ask you to hand over control of your PC, or
- ask you to access any website that does not belong to the Government or NHS.
Please take care and stay safe.