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Coronavirus scams

Alert message sent 14/03/2020 14:14:00

Information sent on behalf of Neighbourhood Watch


The health and safety is always important for caring for vulnerable and elderly people but  the coronavirus makes this a priority. There are false claims so please follow advice on the NHS website https://www.nhs.uk
The Oxford Hub is developing a community corona response with a sign up list on www.oxfordhub.org/community-coronavirus-response and there will be local volunteer schemes to link into. If you wish to share information about your local areas please let me know. 
Even during these challenging times scammers are still taking advantage and I have received this information. 

BE VIGILANT AGAINST CORONAVIRUS-LINKED  SCAMS
Fraudsters are already cashing in on this opportunity.    UK victims across the UK have apparently already lost over £ 800,000 to coronavirus-linked scams in the past  month .
Half the reports were made by victims attempting  to purchase protective face masks from fraudulent sellers.    One victim reported losing over £ 15,000 when they purchased face masks that were never delivered. 
The National Fraud Intelligence Bureau has received multiple reports about coronavirus-related phishing e-mails attempting to trick people into opening malicious attachments or revealing personal or financial information. 
Also beware individuals contacting you by e-mail alleging to be officials from research organisations including the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organisation.   These fraudsters are claiming they can provide a list of coronavirus infected people in your area.   To access this information the recipient is requested to click  on a link which leads to a malicious website or is asked to make a payment in Bitcoin.

HOW TO PROTECT YOURSELF AGAINST SCAMS
1) Be vigilant
Be cautious of calls, e-mails and messages you receive out of the blue.    Never respond to unsolicited or unexpected contact, especially if the call tries to pressure you into making a payment or handing over personal or financial information.
Do not click on any links or attachments in suspicious e-mails 
2) Think before you buy
If you're buying from a company or person you don't know and trust, do some research beforehand.
A quick search online can help you identify if a seller is legitimate.    You could also ask someone close to you for help and advice if you're still unsure. 
3) Protect your devices
Install the latest software and app updates to protect your devices from new threats.
Check the security settings on your phone. It will let you know if your device software is up to date. 
Message sent by
Maggie Lewis (NWN, Multi Scheme Administrator, Thames Valley, Oxford LPA)

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