Warning after scam letters sent to businesses offering “covid air purifiers”
A warning to businesses has been issued after reports of letters advising businesses that ‘Covid Safe air purifiers’ must be purchased as a legal requirement.
The letters claim to come from a ‘Covid Safe Taskforce’ as part of the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.
They falsely state that all businesses have a legal requirement to buy the air purifiers by May 3, 2021.
The purifiers are said to cost £123.80 each and businesses are being advised they must have a minimum of two devices, up to a maximum of 10, depending on the business type and size of premises.
Wrexham Trading Standards say this is a scam, there is no legal requirement for businesses to install such purifiers.
Businesses are asked to complete the application form to order the purifiers, and told someone from the ‘Covid Safe Taskforce’ will then contact them by phone to complete the payment.
The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial strategy (BEIS) has issued a statement on Twitter, saying: “We are aware of scammers sending BEIS headed letters to businesses telling them that, by law, they need to purchase air purifiers to comply with #Covid19 rules.
“This is not true. If you receive a letter, please report it to Action Fraud UK.”
A spokesperson for Wrexham Trading Standards said: “If you think you may have been the victim of fraud or cyber-crime, you should report this to Action Fraud via their website or by calling 0300 123 2040.
“Action Fraud is the UK’s National Fraud and Cyber Crime Reporting Centre.
“It’s really important to follow these three steps when deciding whether it’s safe to part with your money or personal information:
“STOP – Taking a moment to stop and think before parting with your money or information could keep you safe.
“CHALLENGE – Could it be fake? It’s OK to reject, refuse or ignore any requests. Only criminals will try to rush or panic you.
“PROTECT – Contact your bank immediately if you think you’ve fallen for a scam and report it to Action Fraud.
“Consumer advice can be obtained from the Citizens Advice Consumer Service. They can be contacted on 0808 223 1144 (Welsh) or 0808 223 1133 (English).
“Stay safe and please stay scam aware.”
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