Warning as cyber criminals ‘prey on omicron fears’ with new scams

Scammers are continuing to take advantage of topical fears surrounding the pandemic by using the omicron COVID variant as a lure in recent phishing scams.

The NHS has warned of a phishing campaign which leads people to fill in bank details for an “Omicron PCR test”, while Which? has reported rogue sites charging delivery fees for tests that can actually be obtained for free from the NHS.

They also flagged one scam website which asked users to set up a security question. Some scam websites ask for answers to common security questions, (e.g. mother’s maiden name). This isn’t required for a PCR test, but may be abused by scammers to attack other legitimate accounts.

Cyber criminals make use of current events to make their scams seem more convincing and they can be very difficult to spot.

However, it is important to remember the NHS will never ask for bank account or card details.If you receive a suspicious email, you should forward it to report@phishing.gov.uk while suspect texts should be forwarded to 7726’. Scam websites can be reported to the National Cyber Security Centre.