Based on local information, (not verified by myself) it would appear that an elderly person has received a telephone call purporting to represent NHS test and trace service.
The suspect told the person answering the phone, that they had been in contact with someone who had tested positive for COVID-19 and that they now needed to be tested within 72 hours.
The caller then said there was a charge of £50 for the test and took bank card details over the phone. (The long card number, expiry date, name on the card and CVC code giving the criminal all the detail they need to fraudulently use the card)
Any test under the NHS Test and Trace service is free.
The following is an extract from the official government website www.gov.uk and explains how the NHS test and trace service make contact with people.
If the NHS test and trace service contacts you, the service will use text messages, email or phone.
All texts or emails will ask you to sign into the NHS test and trace contact-tracing website
If NHS test and trace calls you by phone, the service will be using a single phone number: 0300 013 5000.
All information you provide to the NHS test and trace service is held in strict confidence and will only be kept and used in line with the Data Protection Act 2018.
Contact tracers will:
- call you from 0300 013 5000
- send you text messages from ‘NHStracing’
- ask you to sign into the NHS test and trace contact-tracing website
- ask for your full name and date of birth to confirm your identity, and postcode to offer support while self-isolating
- ask about the coronavirus symptoms you have been experiencing
- ask you to provide the name, telephone number and/or email address of anyone you have had close contact with in the 2 days prior to your symptoms starting
- ask if anyone you have been in contact with is under 18 or lives outside of England
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
Please remember, criminals can spoof their telephone number, which means they can make the number or name displayed on your phone look genuine.
STOP - Taking a moment to stop and think before parting with your money or information could keep you safe.
CHALLENGE - Could it be fake? It’s ok to reject, refuse or ignore any requests. Only criminals will try to rush or panic you.
PROTECT - Contact your bank immediately if you think you’ve fallen for a scam and report it to Action Fraud.
For further information about NHS Test and Trace visit: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/nhs-test-and-trace-how-it-works