Trafford residents are being warned to watch out for a fake NHS Covid passport scam which is conning the public into handing over their financial details.
Fraudsters are sending texts and emails allegedly from the NHS asking for payment details so they can process an NHS Covid Pass.
Altrincham Healthcare Alliance Primary Care Network which includes patients from Altrincham Medical Practice, Park Medical Practice, Shay Lane Medical Centre, St Johns Medical Centre and West Timperley Medical Centre said a number of patients had reported approaches from fraudsters and that GPs were keen to make other patients aware of the potential threat.
Clinical Director and GP Partner at Altrincham Medical Practice, Kate Jennings said: “Criminals think nothing of preying on peoples’ fears and concerns. With the lessening of restrictions regarding travel plus half-term holidays approaching, more people are looking to access their NHS Covid Pass and fraudsters are obviously exploiting this opportunity.
“The NHS Covid Pass is free and available via the NHS App, the NHS website or by calling 119. The NHS will never ask for payment or any financial details or charge you for an NHS Covid Pass.”
And Dr Mark Jarvis, Medical Director at NHS Trafford Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), added: “Criminals are targeting the public by convincing them to hand over money, financial details and personal information via sending text messages and emails, and sometimes phone calls pretending to be from the NHS. Some have offered fake vaccine certificates for sale.
“While the emails and texts may look like an NHS message at first glance, they are not. These messages are sometimes poorly written, contain poor grammar, use unprofessional language, or are badly punctuated. And the NHS would never ask patients for financial details.
“Please do not reply to these approaches and do not click on any links in emails or texts. Please forward fake emails to the National Cyber Security Centre via firstname.lastname@example.org.”
(Front cover: GP Kate Jennings)