RESIDENTS are being warned not to provide payment details to fraudsters who claim they are from NHS Test and Trace.

Esther McVey, Conservative MP for Tatton, wants her constituents to remain vigilant as scammers try to cash in on the coronavirus pandemic.

Genuine NHS Test and Trace representatives will get in touch with people who have been in recent close contact with someone who has tested positive for Covid-19, and the service is free of charge.

But scammers are blanket calling random numbers and claiming the person must make a payment – adding that if they do not pay, they will be fined.

Ms McVey said: “It is appalling that people are trying to use a pandemic to cash in.

Knutsford Guardian:

"Sadly, this is happening and I would urge everyone to tell their older relatives or neighbours and anyone they think could be vulnerable about this scam.

"Fraudsters are clever they prey on people’s fears and they know people are worried about Covid-19 so they think they can get away with asking people to pay for a test.

“No one calling from the NHS Track and Trace system will ask for payment, they will only inform you of the contact with someone who tested positive and ask you to stay indoors.”

Scammers are trying to con people into paying £50 for a test and claiming that if the person fails to comply they will be hit with a fine.

How to know if a contact tracer is genuine

Genuine contact 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 in the two days prior to your symptoms starting
  • ask if anyone you have been in contact with is under 18 or lives outside of England.

They will not:

  • ask you to pay for a test
  • ask you to download any software
  • ask you to dial a premium rate number
  • ask for any form of payment
  • ask for details of your bank account
  • ask for PIN numbers or a password
  • ask for contact details of anyone you know
  • ask you to visit any website apart from the official site

Scammers can be reported to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040.

The official website for NHS Test and Trace is