Please see below from the Government of Canada and Toronto Police. Updated information is also available at the Government of Canada page: COVID-19: Scams, frauds and misleading claims
As COVID-19 continues to spread globally, watch out for associated scams. Fraudsters want to profit from consumers’ fears, uncertainties and misinformation. Please read the below information.
Protect yourself, beware of:
- Spoofed government, healthcare or research information
- Unsolicited calls, emails and texts giving medical advice or requesting urgent action or payment – If you didn’t initiate contact, you don’t know who you’re communicating to
- Never respond or click on suspicious links and attachments
- Never give out your personal or financial details
- Unauthorized or fraudulent charities requesting money for victims, products or research – Don’t be pressured into making a donation – Verify that a charity is registered
- High-priced or low-quality products purchased in bulk by consumers and resold for profit
- These items may be expired and/or dangerous to your health
- Questionable offers, such as miracle cures, herbal remedies, vaccinations, faster testing
- Fake and deceptive online ads, including cleaning products, hand sanitizers, and other items in high demand
Fraudsters are posing as:
- Cleaning or heating companies offering duct cleaning services or air filters to protect from COVID-19
- Local and provincial hydro/electrical power companies threatening to disconnect your power for non-payment
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or the World Health Organization offering fake lists for sale of COVID-19 infected people in your neighbourhood
- Public Health Agency of Canada giving false results saying you have been tested positive for COVID-19 tricking you into confirming your health card and credit card numbers for a prescription
- Red Cross and other known charities offering free medical products (e.g. masks) for a donation
- Government departments sending out coronavirus-themed phishing emails tricking you into opening malicious attachments, tricking you to reveal sensitive personal and financial details
- Financial advisors pressuring people to invest in hot new stocks related to the disease, offering financial aid and/or loans to help you get through the shut downs
- Door-to-door sales people selling household decontamination services
- Private companies offering fast COVID-19 tests for sale – Only hospitals can perform the tests – No other tests are genuine or guaranteed to provide accurate results
- Selling fraudulent products that claim to treat or prevent the disease – Unapproved drugs threaten public health and violate federal laws
Trusted resources and advice
Reference the latest health information from these legitimate sources:
Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) (Public Health Agency of Canada)
Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak (World Health Organization)
Contact your insurance provider to answer any health insurance questions
Make sure you have anti-virus software installed and keep your operating system up to date.
For further information visit the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre.
Please kindly forward this information to your community members so that they are aware of this and let’s help prevent them becoming victims to these scams.
Police Constable #10609
Toronto Police Service