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Scam alert - residents need to be vigilant as criminals offer COVID-19 vaccine

Date published: 2021-01-13 | Category: Trading Standards


Scam alert - residents need to be vigilant as criminals offer COVID-19 vaccine

Residents across Bath and North East Somerset are being warned about  coronavirus scams and fraudsters who are claiming to be from the NHS.

Across the UK, members of the public have received fraudulent text messages claiming to be from the NHS offering them the opportunity to sign up for the Covid-19 vaccine.

The texts ask the recipient to click on a link which takes them to an online form where they are prompted to input personal and financial details. In some cases the online form looks very similar to the real NHS website.

In the UK, coronavirus vaccines are only available via the NHS. Individuals may be contacted by the NHS, their employer, a GP surgery or a local pharmacy to book an appointment for the vaccine. At no point will payment be requested, the vaccine is always free of charge.

Remember:

  • The NHS will never ask you for your bank or card details.
  • The NHS will never ask you for your PIN or banking password.
  • The NHS will never arrive unannounced at your home to provide the vaccine.
  • The NHS will never ask you to prove your identity by sending copies of personal documents such as your passport, driving licence, bills or pay slips. 
  • If you receive a call you believe to be fraudulent, hang up.
  • If you are suspicious about an email you have received, forward it to report@phishing.gov.uk
  • Suspicious text messages should be forwarded to the number 7726, which is free of charge.

Councillor Paul Crossley, cabinet member for Community Services, said: “This week we have heard of some despicable scams in parts of the country where vulnerable people have been targeted. We need to share these warnings with our friends, neighbours and relatives and especially those who might be more isolated, and as a result, more vulnerable to the scammers.”     

If you believe you are the victim of a fraud, please report this to Action Fraud as soon as possible by calling 0300 123 2040 or visiting www.actionfraud.police.uk

ENDS

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