New warning over coronavirus vaccination scams
- Credit: Copyright: Archant 2020
Watchdogs have warned people about con artists trying to prey on vulnerable people by offering coronavirus vaccinations.
Norfolk Trading Standards officers, based at Norfolk County Council, issued the warning after people were contacted out of the blue with offers of a jab.
Officers had previously issued a warning about Covid-19 vaccination scams, amid concerns con artists are trying to exploit the vulnerable.
They have now issued a fresh warning, after further reports of scammers trying to trick people into parting with personal details.
Officers said: "Most recently, reports have been received of elderly residents receiving a call to advise that their vaccination would be carried out at their home, and that the caller required their name, address and also financial details to pay for the vaccine."
Other reports have seen approaches made by text and from a recorded voice message on the telephone.
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In each case the targeted victim is required to respond by clicking a link in the text message or by pressing 1 when receiving the call.
They are then asked to give personal information, as well as financial details to book their vaccination.
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A spokesman for Norfolk Trading Standards said: "These are scams.
"Criminals are exploiting the current situation to attempt to steal personal details and your money.
"The NHS is currently offering the COVID-19 vaccine to people most at risk from coronavirus.
"These people will be contacted by the NHS and no payment is required for the vaccine".
Officers said there had also been a worldwide surge in vaccine-related phishing scam emails.
They said emails had been seen which contained malicious files, which install malware, or links to bogus websites to obtain the victim's information.
Officers urged people to check email addresses on incoming messages and to be alert to hyperlinks that contain misspelled domain names.
They said people should be aware of highly emotive language designed to manipulate and not to supply login credentials or personal information in response to an email.
They said people should also monitor key financial accounts regularly and keep software and apps updated.
Scams can be reported via 0808 223 1133.