The F.B.I. has issued a warning about scammers who promote fraudulent Covid-19 antibody assessments as strategy to receive private info that can be utilized for identification theft or medical insurance coverage fraud.
The warning, issued Friday, is the newest in a sequence of alerts from the federal authorities about fraudulent exploitation of the coronavirus pandemic.
Scammers are promoting the faux or unapproved assessments — which may present false outcomes — on-line, via social media or electronic mail, or in individual or over the telephone, the F.B.I. mentioned. They may declare that the assessments have been authorised by the Food and Drug Administration, in addition to promote free Covid-19 antibody assessments or present incentives for testing.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation recommends that these trying to take an antibody check — which is used to find out whether or not an individual has had the coronavirus — seek the advice of a listing of assessments and testing corporations that the Food and Drug Administration has authorised. These assessments have been evaluated in a research carried out on the National Institutes of Health’s most cancers institute or by one other F.D.A. designated authorities company.
People must also seek the advice of with their major care doctor earlier than taking any Covid-19 antibody check at house, the F.B.I. says. It additionally warned towards sharing private or well being info with anybody who shouldn’t be a “known and trusted medical professional,” in addition to checking medical payments for suspicious claims and reporting these claims to medical insurance suppliers.
Among the strategies fraudulent entrepreneurs use to acquire essential private info is asking folks and telling them that they’re working with the federal government or that authorities officers are requiring them to take a Covid-19 antibody check. They generally additionally provide to carry out the check for money.
The purpose is to hunt private information, like an individual’s identify, date of delivery, Social Security quantity, Medicare and medical insurance info. This can later be used for identification theft or medical insurance coverage fraud.
The fraudulent assessments, the authorities say, are simply one other method for scammers to capitalize on folks’s fear and uncertainty from the coronavirus pandemic.
Last Wednesday, the Federal Trade Commission warned of scammers pretending to be contact tracers. In early June, the Internal Revenue Service alerted people about fraud surrounding government stimulus coronavirus payments.