Coronavirus Contact Tracing App Scams Detected Already

By Gary Cutlack on at

Those clever old fraudsters are using the coronavirus panic and the emergence of the official contact tracing app to attempt thrilling new types of scam, with trading standards enforcers warning that SMS messages reporting a positive contact test are being sent out. Even to people not currently testing the contact tracing app.

It's an extremely broad spectrum phishing effort, hoping to catch a few people off guard. People who may think the last Facebook app update might've included the contact tracing thing from the news, so perhaps it is legitimate. The message, of course, links to a fraudulent web site that asks for identifying information, aiding in the hacking and exploitation of the unfortunate target.

We may well laugh and wonder how anyone could be so silly, but the trading standards people say Action Fraud has already counted up around £2m that's been lost by people falling for various older Covid-19 scams. CTSI's Katherine Hart said: "We have witnessed a surge in Covid-19-related scams since lockdown began. This evidence is yet another example of scammers modifying their campaigns as the situation develops." [CTSI]