Scammers are said to be going door-to-door posing as coronavirus testers in order to gain entry to other peoples homes, Lewisham Council says.
The Metropolitan police say that corona virus-related crimes have risen 400 per cent in March. From February 1 to the March 18, Action Fraud received 105 reports from victims of corona related frauds, totalling a cost of £970,000.
The Met has issued a warning saying that the public should be “vigilant” as they are a number of scams being perpetrated by criminals who are trying to cash in on people’s fears of coronavirus.
The incidents range from people ordering protective equipment, such as face masks and hand sanitisers, that never arrived, to people using coronavirus to gain entry into people’s home to steal.
Scammers are also sending coronavirus-themed emails. Over 200 emails have been sent in an attempt to trick the public into opening attachments within the email which would then allow scammers to steal personal information such as passwords and banking details.
Superintendent Lis Chapple, the Met’s lead for Crime Prevention, Inclusion and Engagement, said: “We are seeing communities across London rallying together to help each other through this unprecedented public health crisis, and what is a difficult time for many. However, there are a small number of unscrupulous people out there who see it as an opportunity to con others for personal gain.
The most vulnerable in society are often targeted which makes the offending all the more despicable, and the Met is committed to identifying these people and ensuring they are held to account for their actions.
Please take a moment to think about who you are speaking to, what you are agreeing to and what you may be clicking on online. If it seems too good to be true, it probably is.”
Lewisham Council has issued advice to say if anyone visits your property and claims to be conducting such tests, you should call the police on 999.