Scammers are posing as coronavirus contact tracers, BBB says


MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Some see the COVID-19 pandemic as an opportunity to steal your money and personal information, and scammers have developed their own strategy to prey upon your fears during this pandemic.

The Better Business Bureau of the Mid-South shared a recent warning about contact tracing scams.

Contact tracing is how health leaders track who’ve been exposed to the virus. But because it’s new, there’s confusion about what it is, who’s going to be calling and what they’re going to ask for.

A legitimate contact tracer won’t ask you for things like your:

  • banking information
  • credit card number
  • Social Security number

The kinds of questions that the contact tracers are going to ask are:

  • Have you traveled out of the area recently?
  • Have you been in a gathering of more than 10 people?
  • Who were you in close contact with?

Another red flag — contact tracers won’t give information about the person you may have been in contact with.

The BBB urges you to be informed because reliable contact tracing is a critical part of the COVID-19 fight.

“You should cooperate with legitimate contact tracers who are trying to find out where other people might’ve been exposed, but never give out personal information,” said Nancy Crawford with BBB.

The BBB says there are two versions of this scam, one through a text link and the others through a robocall. Don’t click on any links and hang up on those calls.

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