Advice on Coronavirus Scams

The Vale of Glamorgan Council has been made aware of a number of scams relating to the Coronavirus.

 

  • Thursday, 19 March 2020

    Vale of Glamorgan

 

Warning-sign-headerDespite the current increased level of public concern, it is important residents remain alert to this type of crime.


In our neighbouring authority of Cardiff, there are reports of testing kits for the virus being offered by door-to-door salesman.


Residents should be aware that that there are no commercially available tests for Coronavirus and all testing is being carried out by Healthcare professionals. Residents should report any incidents of this nature to Shared Regulatory Services immediately by calling on 0300 1236696 so appropriate action can be taken.


Fraudsters are increasingly targeting the public and organisations with emails, texts, ‘phone calls and WhatsApp messages offering advice and treatment for coronavirus, as well as setting up fake websites selling products and offering ‘cures’.

 

Scammers have also been setting up bogus websites asking for donations for victims or promoting awareness and prevention tips. Cold callers have been contacting organisations suggesting they must have certain measures in place by a certain deadline. 


There have also been cases of:

  • People pretending to sell personal protective equipment such as facemasks, but never sending anything.

  • Emails containing links supposedly with more information about coronavirus but which actually lead to a malicious website or demands for payment.

  • Fake emails supposedly from organisations such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or the World Health Organisation which claim to be able to provide a list of coronavirus-infected people in their area. In fact they contain links to malicious websites.

  • Attempts to trick people into revealing personal, financial or other sensitive information.

 

Protect yourself from scams

To help members of the public protect themselves from becoming a victim of fraud, CIFAS, The UK’s Fraud Prevention Service is advising: 

  • Be sceptical if you receive an email, text or WhatsApp message about the Coronavirus, and never click on any attachments or links.

  • Never provide personal data such as your full name, address and date of birth – scammers can use this information to steal your identity.

  • Don’t allow yourself to be pressured into donating money, and never make donations by cash or gift card, or send money through transfer agents such as Western Union or Moneygram. 

 

If you think you’ve been the victim of a scam, then speak to your bank immediately and report any fraud to Action Fraud:

  • 0300 123 2040