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)

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

Peter Flynn sits at the piano at a Christmas concert. Flynn retired at the end of 2020 and sat down with The Standard to reflect on his long career in the Hope area. (Photo/Peter Flynn)
EXTENDED INTERVIEW: Coquihalla’s longtime elementary school teacher retires

Peter Flynn reflects on decades as a teacher in Hope, teaching at school he went to as a child

Two teens were sent to hospital after being stabbed Saturday evening. (Shane MacKichan photo)
Two teens stabbed in Abbotsford

20-year-old man has been detained

Police tape is shown in Toronto Tuesday, May 2, 2017. (Graeme Roy/The Canadian Press)
CRIME STOPPERS: ‘Most wanted’ for the week of Feb. 28

Crime Stoppers’ weekly list based on information provided by police investigators

Alina Durham, mother of Shaelene Bell, lights candles on behalf of Bell’s two sons during a vigil on Saturday, Feb. 27, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO and PHOTOS: Candlelight vigil for Shaelene Bell of Chilliwack sends message of hope

Small group of family, friends gathered to shine light for 23-year-old mother missing for four weeks

The Great Bear Snowshed on the Coquihalla Highway (Highway 5) in British Columbia. Truck driver Roy McCormack testified in BC Supreme Court in Chilliwack on Feb. 25, 2021 that his brakes started smoking in about this location, and soon after he lost all braking, which led to a multi-vehicle crash further down the road on Aug. 5, 2016. (GoogleMaps)
Truck driver charged in Coquihalla crash showed ‘wanton and reckless disregard for other people’s lives’: Crown

Despite already having brake issues, Roy McCormack tackled the steepest hill on the infamous highway

A health worker holds a vial of AstraZeneca vaccine to be administered to members of the police at a COVID-19 vaccination center in Mainz, Germany, Thursday, Feb. 25, 2021. The federal state of Rhineland-Palatinate, start with the vaccination of police officers in internal police vaccination centers. (Andreas Arnold/dpa via AP)
B.C. officials to unveil new details of COVID vaccination plan Monday

Seniors and health-care workers who haven’t gotten their shot are next on the list

An investigation is underway after a man was shot and killed by Tofino RCMP in Opitsaht. (Black Press Media file photo)
Man shot and killed by RCMP near Tofino, police watchdog investigating

Investigation underway by Independent Investigations Office of British Columbia.

Baldy Mountain Resort was shut down on Saturday after a fatal workplace accident. (Baldy Mountain picture)
Jasmine and Gwen Donaldson are part of the CAT team working to reduce stigma for marginalized groups in Campbell River. Photo by Marc Kitteringham, Campbell River Mirror
Jasmine’s story: Stigma can be the hardest hurdle for those overcoming addiction

Recovering B.C. addict says welcome, connection and community key for rebuilding after drug habit

A Vancouver restaurant owner was found guilty of violating B.C.’s Human Rights Code by discriminating against customers on the basis of their race. (Pixabay)
Vancouver restaurant owner ordered to pay $4,000 to customers after racist remark

Referring to patrons as ‘you Arabs’ constitutes discrimination under B.C.’s Human Rights Code, ruling deems

Judith Uwamahoro is Black, approximately 4’7″ tall, 80 pounds and has short black hair and brown eyes. (Surrey RCMP handout)
UPDATED: Lower Mainland 9-year-old located after police make public plea

Judith Uwamahoro went missing Friday at around 4 p.m. in Surrey

Five-year-old Nancy Murphy wears a full mask and face shield as she waits in line for her kindergarten class to enter school during the COVID-19 pandemic on Tuesday, September 15, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Variant of concern linked to COVID-19 outbreak at three Surrey schools

Cases appear to be linked to community transmissions, but schools will remain open

Nanaimo children’s author and illustrator Lindsay Ford’s latest book is ‘Science Girl.’ (Photo courtesy Lindsay Ford)
B.C. children’s writer encourages girls to pursue the sciences in new book

Lindsay Ford is holding a virtual launch for latest book, ‘Science Girl’

BC Ferries experienced heavy traffic on Feb. 27 following cancellations the day before due to strong winds and adverse weather. (Black Press Media file photo)
BC Ferries sailings fill up quickly after Friday cancellations due to high winds

Waits expected on Swartz Bay-Tsawwassen route, Horseshoe Bay-Departure Bay route

Most Read