Surrey County Council have recently published the following important information on scams in relation to the current pandemic. Please take a moment to read this information compiled by Trading Standards.
Please be aware of:
- People offering miracle cures for coronavirus – there is no specific treatment for coronavirus (COVID-19)
- Bogus healthcare workers claiming to be offering ‘home-testing’ for coronavirus – this is a scam; these kits are not currently available to buy
- The council does not need to enter your house to do a deep clean
- Emails saying that you can get a refund on taxes or business rates should be treated with extreme caution. Often the sender just wants your personal details
- There are new mobile phone apps that claim to give you updates on the virus; instead they lock your phone and demand a ransom
- Your bank or the police will NEVER ask for your bank details over the phone
- People offering to do your shopping and ask for money upfront and then disappear.
Tips to avoid getting tricked out of your money:
- Do not place items on your doorstep to say you need help as this is an invitation to scammers that you may be in a vulnerable situation
- Be sceptical; don’t be afraid to hang up, bin it, delete it, or shut the door
- Take your time; don’t be rushed
- If you are online, be aware of fake news. Use trusted sources such as GOV.uk or NHS.uk, or Surrey County Council’s Official Coronavirus Information and Advice web page
- Know who you’re dealing with. If you need help, talk to someone you know, or get in touch with your local district or borough council
- Protect your financial information, especially from people you don’t know. Do not give your bank card or PIN number to a stranger.
Report a scam
If you think you have been scammed, call the police on 101 (999 only in an emergency)
To report a complaint relating to a coronavirus scam, contact Trading Standards by email email@example.com, or call 01296 388 788