There is a new phone scam telling people they have been in contact with someone with COVID-19. The caller asks for a home address, and credit card information for a $50 testing kit to be shipped out. (Dan Ferguson/Langley Advance Times)

Phone call scammers now preying on COVID-19 fears

Fake contact tracers asking for credit card information for $50 testing kit to be mailed out

A new phone scam is taking advantage of fears surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic.

The caller tells the victim they’ve been in contact with someone who has tested positive for the novel coronavirus. While this is how some contact tracing takes place, what happens next on the phone call is what marks it as a scam.

The caller says that a mandatory testing kit needs to be mailed to the person’s home, and that their home address is needed. Also required is a credit card number for a $50 fee for the kit.

READ MORE: Vancouver police warn of CRA scam calls about fake debts

This call happened to a Chilliwack man with dementia recently, and the Chilliwack Seniors Resource Society is sounding the alarm so that others won’t fall victim to the scam.

Lori White, program and activity coordinator for the society called the scam “disgusting,” in the way it preys on those who trust authority. Thankfully, with the case they have heard of, the person did not have access to their credit card information.

“If he had access, he probably would have gone along with it,” she said. “They threaten you with consequences, and because of the fear they fall for it.”

The society has a regular presenter come in and give talks about different scams making their way through communities.

She says there are a number of clues that a caller has bad intentions. Asking for financial information is a big one. Another is if the call turns threatening, or if they are offering a deal that is too good to be true.

READ MORE: Hang up – Local RCMP renews warning about tax season scammers


@CHWKcommunity
jpeters@theprogress.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

Coronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Lavender hand sanitizer sale raises cash for Fraser Valley Health Care Foundation

Golf course and lavender farm partner up to support health care in the Fraser Valley

Donations of fresh produce sought from Chilliwack backyard gardeners

Hamper program from Chilliwack Citizens for Change to serve those with special dietary needs

Historic threshermen’s site set to re-open this weekend in Chilliwack

‘It’s a huge test run for us to see how it all works,’ says Atchelitz Threshermen’s Association president

Spadina Avenue is being reconstructed from Corbould to Ashwell

Fewer parking stalls in the street but the Curling Club parking expansion will compensate

UPDATE: Former Chilliwack city councillor’s breach of trust case resolved using ‘alternative measures’

Charges dropped against Sam Waddington who faced two counts from 2017 related to allegations

B.C. records new COVID-19 death, 85 more cases; Horgan calls on celebrity help

This brings the total number of active confirmed cases to 531 across the province

Teachers to get 2 extra days to prepare for students’ return, now set for Sept. 10

Students will first start with orientation and learn rules of COVID-19 classroom policies

High-volume littering at Cape Scott draws ire from hiking groups

Popular Vancouver Island hiking spot not closing, but frustration about crowding grows

SFU to drop ‘Clan’ varsity team name

The ‘Clan’ name is shortened from ‘Clansmen,’ and was introduced roughly 55 years ago

BCSPCA partners with Crime Stoppers

Many call in to the SPCA, but want to remain anonymous: Eccles

New Tory leader must build a strong team in Commons and for the campaign: Scheer

Scheer marked his final day in the House of Commons today as leader of the Opposition

B.C. to hire 500 more COVID-19 contact tracers ahead of fall

Contract tracers add an ‘extra layer’ in the fight against the novel coronavirus

Feds commit $305M in additional funds for Indigenous communities during COVID-19

Money can be used to battle food insecurity and support children and mental health

We were a bit tone deaf: Hobo Cannabis renamed Dutch Love after backlash

Hobo Cannabis has various locations in Vancouver, Kelowna and Ottawa

Most Read