Unscrupulous criminals will attempt to exploit any situation & the virtual world is no different. There has been a significant increase in cyber crime worldwide during the coronavirus pandemic, and the RGP is aware of individuals and businesses locally who have been targetted by covid-19 related scams through phishing emails & smishing.
The pandemic has brought lots of emails offering vaccines, home testing kits, facemasks, hand sanitiser, tax refunds & other Coronavirus-related subjects. Almost all are probably fraudulent, which means you might buy something that doesn’t exist, get tricked into giving away your confidential details to fraudsters or download malware on to your computer or other device. In addition to the well known unsolicited messages/suspicious emails (especially those asking for any personal/financial data or asking you to click on links) we receive from time to time, the public should be wary of emails you or family members might receive appealing for donations for Coronavirus victims or new ventilators. They're almost certainly fake, designed to steal your money, identity or both. Think before you click!
Do we know how to spot the tell-tale signs of a fraudulent email? With scammers becoming increasingly sophisticated, we can no longer just rely on bad spelling, poor grammar, suspect logos or those "too-good-to-be-true" offers as tell tale signs. We ask the public to consider how important their email is. Emails are used not just to communicate but also to sign up to / operate online accounts. They may contain confidential data and can be used to access your contacts. Using strong, unique passwords (eg: three random words) for email accounts will help protect them from hacking.
If you think you’ve been a victim of fraud, contact your bank & report it to us at www.police.gi/report-online or by calling us on 20072500 For an updated list of email scams exploiting the Coronavirus pandemic, visit https://www.getsafeonline.org/news/coronavirus-scams-you-should-be-aware-of/ For more advice on protecting yourself from online scams and fraud visit: police.gi/information/cyber-safety The RGP is currently supporting a safe email campaign in partnership with Get Safe Online UK http://www.getsafeonline.org/safeemail