Test and Trace – avoiding scammers

Stopping COVID-19 from spreading is crucial to prevent more lives from being lost. The new Test and Trace contact tracers, who are getting in touch with recent close contacts of people who have had a positive COVID-19 test, are starting to play an important part in breaking the chain of infection. However, it is important that people are not taken advantage of by fraudsters gathering personal information by deception. Please share this information with your networks:

Genuine contract tracers will:

  • call you from 0300 013 5000
  • send you text messages from ‘NHS’
  • ask you to sign into the NHS test and trace contact-tracing website
  • ask for your full name and date of birth to confirm your identity, and postcode to offer support while self-isolating
  • ask about the coronavirus symptoms you have been experiencing
  • ask you to provide the name, telephone number and/or email address of anyone you have had close contact with from the two days before your symptoms started
  • ask if anyone you have been in contact with is under 18 or lives outside of England.

Never disclose financial information, password information or further personal details to anyone over the phone. If you are concerned about the process, check the details of the scheme online here: www.gov.uk

Contact tracers will never:

  • ask you to dial a premium rate number to speak to them (for example, those starting 09 or 087)
  • ask you to make any form of payment
  • ask for any details about your bank account
  • ask for your social media identities or login details, or those of your contacts
  • ask you for any passwords or PINs, or ask you to set up any passwords or PINs over the phone
  • ask you to purchase a product
  • ask you to download any software to your device or ask you to hand over control of your PC,
    smartphone or tablet
  • ask you to access any website that does not belong to the Government or NHS.

Whilst it is possible for criminals to fake official phone numbers, they cannot fake official website addresses.

We would encourage anyone with concerns about a phone call, text message or email they have received, in relation to Test and Trace, to check the website address being provided to you carefully. If possible, type the official address, which will be www.contact-tracing.phe.gov.uk followed by unique characters given to you, directly into your browser.