Scam artists offering bogus covid tests and certificates - The Rugby Observer

Scam artists offering bogus covid tests and certificates

Rugby Editorial 5th Jan, 2021   0

SCAM artists are offering bogus covid-19 tests and fake ‘covid free’ certificates, Warwickshire residents have been warned.

Warwickshire Trading Standards is investigating a case in which a consumer may have unwittingly paid over £100 to fraudsters for a ‘quick-turn-around’ covid-19 test and received a fake ‘all-clear’ certificate in return.

The genuine laboratory named on the certificate has confirmed it was previously unaware of the ‘testing firm’, did not carry out the test or issue any certificate.

The ‘quick-turn-around’ tests were being advertised on social media, targeted at individuals who do not have symptoms but who require proof of a negative test result. Consumers requiring private tests normally have to pay for them, at a cost of around £150.




Warwickshire County Council’s community safety spokesman Coun Andy Crump said: “I would urge anyone seeking a private test to look for legitimate companies. Visit the government’s list of private providers and follow their guidance.”

People without symptoms are encouraged to access one of Warwickshire’s newly established free lateral flow test sites in Rugby, Leamington, Bedworth, Nuneaton and Water Orton. A sixth site is due to open in Stratford on January 12.


Those using the sites will be tested using fast-turnaround lateral flow test kits supplied by NHS Test and Trace in a bid to identify undiagnosed cases and stop people ‘unwittingly spreading the virus’.

Dr Shade Agboola, Director of Public Health at Warwickshire County Council, said: “The new testing facilities will play a key role in tackling Covid-19. By testing people who don’t have symptoms, we are hoping to identify those who are not aware that they have the virus and may be unwittingly spreading it to other people – including friends, loved ones and work colleagues.

“By breaking the chain of transmission and picking up those who are asymptomatic, we hope that we will reduce the spread of the virus and protect those who are most at risk.

“Only by working together can we make a difference, so please play your part, support your community and go along to your nearest testing facility and get a free test.”

Only people without Covid-19 symptoms should book a test at one of the lateral flow test sites. Visit https://tinyurl.com/y6puy58p for more information.

Anyone with symptoms of Covid-19 – a high temperature, a new continuous cough or a change to their sense of taste or smell – must self-isolate and book a test via https://www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test or by calling 119.

Visit https://www.warwickshire.gov.uk/coronavirusvulnerable or call 0800 408 1447 for information about covid-19 help and support available from Warwickshire County Council.

The Government maintains updated lists of private providers of coronavirus testing. These providers have declared that they meet the government’s minimum standards. The lists are continually updated by the Department of Health and Social Care and are reviewed by UKAS. Visit https://tinyurl.com/y8l87xsg to view the list.

To report a scam or fraud to Trading Standards and receive advice, visit https://www.warwickshire.gov.uk/consumeradvice or contact the Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 0808 223 1133.

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