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People in Lichfield and Burntwood are being warned of a new scam linked to the coronavirus crisis.

Trading Standards say people in Staffordshire have been targeted by people claiming to be from the NHS Test and Trace service.

In the scam, people are told that they have been in close contact with someone with COVID-19 and have to self-isolate for seven days.

They are then asked for their address, so a test kit can be sent out to them – but they are then asked for the bank details to pay a £500 charge for the results.

Cllr Gill Heath, cabinet member for communities at Staffordshire County Council, said NHS test kits are currently provided free of charge.

“During times of crisis, we always see criminals trying to take advantage of the situation, and trying to get their hands on your personal data or relieve you of some of your hard earned money.

“These kinds of scammers are experts at impersonating organisations, and they will spend time researching you for their scams, hoping you’ll let your guard down for just a moment.

“This latest scam can appear genuine but please don’t fall for it.

“If you need a coronavirus test sent out to you because you are unable to attend a test site, this is done for free, both delivery and collection, followed up by the result.”

Cllr Gill Heath, Staffordshire County Council

Trading Standards are reminding people that any test and trace communication will only come from the NHS 0300 013 5000 number or via text.

“Remember, any kind of unsolicited approach whether on the doorstep, over the phone or in an email should start to ring alarm bells, so please stay alert and watch out for your older neighbours and relatives as they can be really vulnerable to scams too.”

Cllr Gill Heath, Staffordshire County Council

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