• Harrison Jones

Contact tracing - How to avoid falling for spam texts

Contact tracers are still hard at work all over the world to try and locate everyone who may have potentially contracted coronavirus (COVID-19) from a positive case, by now millions of texts might have been sent by these teams of workers. How do you know which texts are legitimate and which are spam?

Coronavirus spam texts are growing - rapidly. It is sometimes very hard to see which ones are real, as no government can, or has really shown us what these texts/calls will look like. We don't know what the number/sender name will be, and we aren't aware of what it will say on the text, or at least until we get a text.

Contact tracing - How to avoid falling for spam texts

The most common legitimate forms of contract tracer texts come in the form of somebody working from the government notifying you that a specific number is going to call you shortly. The number will be enclosed in the text, and there isn't going to be any links or attachments to open.

Some examples of texts to avoid opening whatsoever are;

  • Any texts with a link to open a file or attachment.

  • Asking for personal details that aren't your name and/or date of birth - So avoid texts that ask for a pin, bank account details, social media account details etc.

  • Texts not listed from the same contact listed on your own government's website.

Staying safe during these kinds of times is especially important, as scammers will find it very easy to create loopholes against the real texts. If you really want to make sure the text is legit, you can usually reply and ask the sender to email you with a link to their website.

Contact tracing - How to avoid falling for spam texts

If the website has a closed padlock on the left of the URL, it can be deemed as safe. If you're still unsure, just ask who they got your details from. A real contact tracer will have these details, as opposed to a scammer, who will have probably got your mobile number from something like Facebook, an email list, or a random generator.

It's not only texts that are a problem, spam callers can work just as well. It is very easy to fake which number you are calling from, and if you answer a call from a number which matches that of the official number of what the government employed contact tracers are calling from, you might fall for a scammer.

If you have answered a call from a scammer using the same number as the official number, make sure to either ask who provided them with your details, or alternatively ask them to email you their website instead. You don't need to give away anything more than your name, date of birth and your email (If you choose to feel sceptical about the contact you have received).

Remember to stay safe, and take precautions if you feel a scammer is trying to take advantage. Only the government contact tracers can get your details from a trusted contact of yours.

Thank you for reading 'Contact tracing - How to avoid falling for spam texts' by IT Block. IT Block is an IT support services provider in SIngapore and we love sharing our IT expertise with the world.

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