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Scam Alert: New COVID-19 coronavirus text scam

Posted 26/03/20

The Chartered Trading Standards Institute (CTSI) has been sent evidence of a text scam circulating which claims to offer a lump sum payment from the government to the recipient.

Similar to a recent email-based scam offering a bogus tax rebate from HMRC, this new scam claims that the government are offering lump-sum payments "as part of its promise to battle COVID-19." Each text specifies a particular sum and asks the recipient to tap the link to a bogus website which requests payment details from the recipient.

CTSI has issued warnings about multiple scams which have arisen over the past fortnight in the wake of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.

CTSI Lead Officer, Katherine Hart, said: "While the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic is bringing out the best behaviour from the majority of the public, it is also leading to a sharp rise in scams. Opportunists have unleashed a barrage of different scams to try and defraud the public out of money during this vulnerable time.

"The government are not issuing lump-sum payments, and anyone who receives these texts should ignore them and not tap the link.

"For trusted news and advice on COVID-19 coronavirus, check for updates from the Department of Health and Social Care in the UK, Public Health England and the World Health Organisation (WHO)."



Notes for Editors:

CTSI Press Office: pressoffice@tsi.org.uk, 01268 582240

Chartered Trading Standards Institute (CTSI)

CTSI is a training and membership organisation that has represented the interests of the Trading Standards profession since 1881 nationally and internationally. We aim to raise the profile of the profession while working towards fairer, better informed and safer consumer and business communities.

CTSI's members are engaged in delivering frontline trading standards services in local authorities and in businesses. www.tradingstandards.uk

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