Sadly in the midst of the Coronavirus crisis, there are people who have been taking advantage of the situation to try and scam people, particularly those who are elderly and vulnerable. This section gives you information on the scams that we have been made aware of so that you can be on alert.
See the latest government information on fraud and cyber crime here.
A new hotline has been launched to stop fraudsters illegally targeting COVID stimulus schemes.
In an initiative between government and the independent charity Crimestoppers, the public can now call a new COVID Fraud Hotline (0800 587 5030) anonymously and free of charge to report suspected fraudulent activity. For further details please click here.
The National Cyber Security Centre is offering guidance on how to stay secure online during Coronavirus: https://www.ncsc.gov.uk/cyberaware.
Thames Valley Police summarise measures we can take to prevent becoming victims of cyber crime here.
If you believe you have been the victim of fraud or identity theft, report this directly to Action Fraud either online at www.actionfraud.police.uk or via phone 0300 123 2040 Where the victim is vulnerable, call 101.
MK Council’s Trading Standards team has foiled 40 scams since the start of the coronavirus outbreak – that’s three times more than usual. We’re cracking down on scammers exploiting the current situation to take advantage of isolated and vulnerable residents in MK. To report any concerns please click here.
Residents are also being urged to be especially wary of people offering or selling:
• Virus testing kits – these are only offered by the NHS.
• Vaccines or miracle cures – there is currently no vaccine or cure.
• Shopping or medication collection services that require payment upfront.
• Home cleaning services.
• Overpriced or counterfeit products.
Residents must also be wary of emails, texts, telephone calls and messages via social media from scammers offering refunds on taxes or bills, as these are highly prevalent.