Cheshire East Council is warning residents to beware of doorstep con artists and internet scammers who are cashing in on the coronavirus epidemic.
Older people and those who are vulnerable have already been targeted, with some unscrupulous ‘traders’ selling useless protective masks, in some cases escorting victims to cash points or carrying out distraction burglaries by gaining entry to people’s homes.
Cheshire East Council’s trading standards team and Cheshire police are also advising residents to be alert to criminals posing as health workers to gain entry to people’s homes. These distraction burglaries have already been reported in other boroughs.
The council’s trading standards team is also warning of phishing emails – unsolicited emails containing malicious attachments which invite users to share confidential information, including financial details.
There is a further warning to beware of illegal money lenders as some people may be temped to borrow cash in fear of losing their jobs and income.
Anyone who is suspicious of a doorstep or telephone cold caller should contact:
● Cheshire police on 101; or
● Action Fraud on 0300123 2040; or
● Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 0808 223 1133.
Alternatively, go to the Cheshire East Council trading standards website via: https://www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/business/trading_standards/consumers/scams_information/reporting-scams.aspx
For the very latest guidance on coronavirus visit the Public Health England website at: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-information-for-the-public