Friday, August 20, 2021

Gardaí are warning of a recent text message scam about Covid tests and vaccine appointments.

The messages purport to be from Health Service Executive (HSE) and advise the public to book an appointment for a Covid-19 test through a link in the text.

The Garda National Economic Crime Bureau (GNECB) warn that once the person clicks on the link they will be brought to a cloned website where the fraudsters will seek their personal information, including their PPS number and payment for the Covid-19 test or vaccine.

In most instances the supplied links look very similar to the authentic HSE URL but may be misspelled.

Gardaí reiterated that the HSE will never look for payment for Covid-19 tests or vaccinations and the public should be wary of such text messages.

“There are also other ‘smishing’ texts being received and these can purport to be from service providers, revenue, banks and/or delivery businesses. Some can fit into the threads of previously received genuine texts which adds an air of authenticity to them,” the GNECB statement warns.

Gardaí said people should never click on a link of an unsolicited text, email or respond to cold callers seeking personal information, never reply or call the number supplied by these texts, and never give away personal data like PIN number, card numbers, passwords, one time codes, PPS numbers. If you have responded to such a text or paid the scammers, contact your bank immediately for a recall, the GNECB advises.

Contact Newsdesk: 045 432147

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