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Scam alert Gardaí issue fresh warning after bogus Covid-19 test texts

This can include their PPS number and payment for the fake Covid-19 test or vaccine

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An example of a scam text with misspellings included

An example of a scam text with misspellings included

An example of a scam text with misspellings included

Gardaí have issued a fresh warning to the public to be aware of a scam that involves text messages urging people to book an appointment for a Covid-19 test. 

Unsuspecting recipients click on a link in the text that brings them to a cloned website where the fraudsters will seek their personal information.

This can include their PPS number and payment for the fake Covid-19 test or vaccine.

Gardai have reminded the public that the HSE will never look for payment for Covid-19 tests or vaccinations and that people should be wary of such text messages.

“In most instances the supplied links look very similar to the authentic HSE URL but may be misspelled,” gardai said in a statement issued this afternoon.

“There are also other ‘smishing’ texts being received and these can purport to be from service providers, revenue, banks and/or delivery businesses.

“Some can fit into the threads of previously received genuine texts which adds an air of authenticity to them.”

An Garda Síochána's advice to the public is as follows:

- Never click on a link of an unsolicited text, email or respond to cold callers seeking personal information.

- Do not use reply or call the number supplied by these texts.

- Never give away personal data like PIN number, card numbers, passwords, one time codes, PPS numbers

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- The HSE will never text you seeking payment for Covid-19 tests or vaccines

- If you have responded to such a text or paid the scammers, contact your bank immediately for a recall.

- It is also important to report the matter to your local Garda Station.

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