Scam Awareness

Page updated on: 04/01/2023

Scam Awareness

Criminals are exploiting the Covid-19 pandemic to defraud people.

Email, text and phone call scams:

• An unexpected email from the government offering you money.
• The 'infection list' scam mimicking the World Health Organisation (WHO) claiming to provide a list or map of local infections.
• An email from HM Government asking for donations for the NHS.
• An HMRC email stating you are ‘eligible to receive a tax refund’.
• Sale of fake COVID-19 swabbing tests, supplements, and anti-virus kits.
• A text message asking you to pay a fine as it says you have been recorded as leaving your home on three occasions during a lockdown.
• A phone call stating ‘government guidelines now require everyone to wear a mask outside the house, press 1 to purchase your mask’.

Doorstep crime:

• Cleansing services that offer to clean drives and doorways to kill bacteria or offering to 'decontaminate' the inside of your home.
• Bogus healthcare workers offering ‘home-testing’ for the virus.
• Criminals offering to do your shopping. They take the money and do not return.

Advice and Support:

Always question ‘any’ unsolicited calls, texts or emails requesting your personal or financial information (name, address, bank details).
To verify the company contact them directly using a known email or phone number.
For advice on cybercrime, or to report suspicious emails, visit

Anyone who has been a victim of fraud or cybercrime can report it online at or call 0300 123 2040
Or contact Citizens Advice Consumer Services on 0808 223 1133