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Gloucestershire Business News

Police issue warning over Test and Trace scammers

Gloucestershire Constabulary is warning people to be on their guard over hoax phone calls claiming to be on behalf of NHS Test and Trace.

Officers have been made aware of fraud attempts aiming to get vulnerable people to hand over payments for a testing kit.

NHS Test and Trace helps trace close recent contacts of anyone who tests positive for coronavirus and, if necessary, notifies them that they must self-isolate at home to help stop the spread of the virus.

Anyone known to have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for coronavirus will be contacted by the NHS through either text, email or telephone. The service will be using a single phone number 0300 0135 000.

Contact tracers will never:

  • ask you to dial a premium rate number to speak to us (for example, those starting 09 or 087)
  • ask you to make any form of payment or purchase a product or any kind
  • 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
  • disclose any of your personal or medical information to your contacts
  • provide medical advice on the treatment of any potential coronavirus symptoms
  • ask you to download any software to your PC or ask you to hand over control of your PC, smartphone or tablet to anyone else
  • ask you to access any website that does not belong to the government or NHS

Detective sergeant Simon Shaw said: "The NHS Test and Trace service has been introduced to help the fight against Coronavirus. Sadly, some criminals seek to use the Covid-19 situation as an opportunity to defraud people.

"The NHS Test and Trace service staff will never ask for your financial details, PIN numbers, or banking passwords. They will never be ask you to hand over cash or transfer money out of your bank account.

"It is possible for criminals to fake official phone numbers but they cannot fake official websites. Therefore, if you receive a Test and Trace phone call, text message or email, please check the website address being provided very carefully. Type the full address into your web browser rather than clicking on any links within the message."

More details of the NHS Test and Trace service can be found at www.gov.uk or www.nhs.uk.

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