Avoiding scams and staying safe while shopping
Guidance for consumers on coronavirus and food
- GOV.UK - guidance for consumers on coronavirus and food - advice issued by the Food Standards Agency
Scams and fraud
Across Warwickshire, people are offering support to individuals who are self-isolating, for example, to buy food and other provisions. In most cases, these offers are well-intentioned and genuine. However, there may be some who view the coronavirus crisis as an opportunity to scam residents.
Here are some top tips to protect yourself, especially if you are relying on others to shop on your behalf.
- If someone is shopping on your behalf, ask them to buy only what you really need and only provide them with small amounts of cash at a time.
- There are community volunteers across Warwickshire eager to help. Please don't give cash to anyone who asks for it in return for helping you.
- Don't give anyone your bank card or PIN number; this would potentially give them access to all your money.
- Don't be pressurised into accepting help from an unexpected caller on the doorstep. Take a second opinion from someone you know and trust.
- Fraudsters, whether on the doorstep, on the telephone or online will use the coronavirus for criminal gain. Never buy goods or services from people you don't know and/or trust.
To report a suspicious doorstep offer of help, or any type of scam please phone the Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 0808 223 1133.
Citizens Advice can provide telephone support and advice. They will also alert Warwickshire Trading Standards Service who can provide additional advice.
Keeping yourself safe when you go shopping
Shopping should be limited to household necessities (for instance food and medicines). When you shop for these, here are a few rules you must follow.
- Come by yourself
- Stay only as long as needed
- Avoid close contact with others
- Distance yourself at least 2 metres (6 feet) away from other people when shopping or in a queue
- Wear a face covering (unless exempt)
- Use contactless payment if possible
- Try to limit the number of visits to shops or supermarkets you make in a week
- Remember to wash your hands for 20 seconds before and after you shop