Being vigilant of fraud during COVID-19
With the recent increase in scams surrounding COVID-19, we wanted to share some additional guidance. Unfortunately scammers are experts at impersonating people, organisations and even the police and activity around scams tends to increase during such times. They'll often spend hours researching on how to take advantage of businesses, so it's important you ensure all of your team are aware of the potential threat.
Stop: Take a moment to stop and think before parting with your money or any sensitive information.
Challenge: Could it be fake? It's ok to reject, refuse or ignore any requests. Only criminals will try to rush or panic you.
Protect: Contact your bank immediately if you think you've fallen for a scam and report it to the relevant authorities.
Some of these scammers are targeting business and people offering to sell supplies to help you adapt to current working life e.g. hand sanitiser, wipes, face masks etc. They'll offer them at a price that's 'too good to be true' or some have even gone as far as asking people to support fake charities. Reports from the public have already included scams where people have bulk ordered products that never arrived and a number of cases have been identified where fake testing kits have been offered for sale.
As more of us are working remotely, people will be particularly vulnerable to computer fraud - make sure your team aren't afraid to challenge any emails or cold calls.
What to do if you think someone's trying to scam you:
- If you ever doubt a message's authenticity, don't click links. Visit www.gov.uk to check any information given and try to verify an organisation's phone number or website.
- You can report any suspicious offers of financial assistance to email@example.com.
- To report any known scams that are targeting your business please contact firstname.lastname@example.org, and we can apply extra vigilance around your account and monitor transactions.