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Risky Business


Tips and tricks for securing information


Coronavirus Related Scams

By Daniela Cooper, on 27 January 2021

I wanted to remind you all that coronavirus scams are rife at the moment, please be vigilant and remember to think before you click. If you are unsure if something is legitimate or not, please verify it with the organisation by using their contact details from their website (use Google to find the website, don’t click on a link to the website in a scam message). If you are unable to do that then please check with us – isg@ucl.ac.uk.

Examples of Coronavirus scams circulating at the moment

  • HRMC COVID-19 scam text messages
    This particular scam mentions a grant that does not exist, however, there have been 275 other HMRC scams discovered since March last year.
  • COVID-19 vaccine scams
    These scams can be via email or text message and are asking for personal and/or financial details. Coronavirus vaccines are free, if you are unsure if a message like this is legitimate or not, contact your local surgery.
  • Continued risk of ransomware
    There is a continued risk of ransomware, be careful not to click on links or open unexpected attachments. Back-up your data just in case!

Where to look for advice and information on scams

The National Cyber Security Centre provide weekly threat reports, and general information on how to protect yourself and your family:

The NCSC have also created a good infographic on phishing:

Action Fraud is good for reporting scams, for news on the latest scams and tips on how to protect yourself:


If you have any questions or need support on any security related issues, please do not hesitate to contact us – isg@ucl.ac.uk.

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