Fraudulent calls and text messages are circulating, offering the COVID-19 vaccination. In some cases, people are asked to press a number on their keypad or to send a text message to confirm they wish to receive the vaccine. Doing so is likely to result in a charge being applied to their phone bill.
In other cases, callers are offering the vaccine for a fee or asking for bank details.
Like other scams, the same rules apply;
- Don’t click on links or attachments in unexpected texts, emails or instant messages.
- Challenge every request for your personal details.
- It doesn’t matter what they say or what they know about you, don’t respond to unexpected phone calls, hang up, take five then verify their claims via a trusted method (such as the usual website or official phone number).
The vaccine is only available from the NHS and the NHS will contact you when it is your turn. At present, appointments are only being offered to members of the public over 80 years old.
The NHS will:
- NEVER ask you to press a button on your keypad or send a text asking you to confirm you want the vaccine.
- NEVER ask for payment for the vaccine or for your bank details.
If you believe you have been the victim of fraud or identity theft, you should report this directly to Action Fraud either online using the link below or by phoning 0300 123 2040.
Where the victim is vulnerable, report it to the Mailing Preference Service online or by calling 101.
Which.co.uk has provided an example of the scam text message you can view here: