RESIDENTS receiving texts about receiving the Covid-19 vaccine have been warned to check it is not a scam.
An official-looking communication which pretends to be from the NHS, asks recipients to include their bank details, which would never happen.
Westbury’s White Horse Health Centre managing partner Mark Dickson said, “We haven’t had any patients come directly to us yet, but have heard of the scam. The White Horse Health Centre would never ever ask for bank account or any other payment details on the telephone. If in any doubt please do hang up the call and call the surgery direct on 01373 828330. “
Mr Dickson said, “The Covid vaccine, as delivered by the NHS is a free service to patients and anyone being asked for payment should question this. We are in the process of working through possible delivery dates of the Covid vaccine and will be contacting our patients in the relevant age and at risk groups as directed, in the coming days and weeks.”
A warning about the scan had been posted on a Westbury community Facebook page saying “My dad just got an NHS text telling him to complete a form for his first vaccine. All official-looking NHS form with all his details on. He completed the form until at the end it then asked to confirm his bank details. He phoned the doctors ‘ surgery who confirmed this is a scam, but a very well organised scam.
“So please warn all parents and grandparents to be careful and confirm any forms like this with your doctor or NHS.”
Wiltshire Police report, “At a time when people are already feeling anxious and eagerly awaiting details of the impending vaccine, scammers are using this to their advantage to commit fraud. If you receive such a text, don’t follow the link or share any personal or financial details. The link will take you through to a fake NHS website which is purposefully designed to exploit vulnerable people.
“Fraudsters have tried to use the vaccine as a convincing subject to hook potential victims since the pandemic began.
“You will be contacted by the NHS when you’re invited to receive the vaccine which will be offered in some hospitals, some pharmacies and hundreds of local vaccination centres run by GPs. Remember that the vaccine is free of charge, at no point will you be asked for payment details.”
More vaccine scams – see page 12