As the coronavirus spreads across the globe, scammers and unsavory businesses are ready to take advantage of the fear and uncertainty — don’t be a victim.
No, federal health workers are not knocking on front doors in New Jersey to conduct “surveillance” amid growing fears about the coronavirus.
State and local officials issued advisories on Monday telling residents not to let in anyone claiming to be from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The police department in Moorestown, Burlington County, cited unverified social media posts of individuals going door to door and claiming to be from the CDC.
“The CDC is not deploying teams of people to go door to door to conduct surveillance,” Moorestown police posted to their Facebook page.
A similar message was posted by Sussex County’s government, among others.
“If an individual claims to be from the CDC do not let them in your home or speak with them — contact your local law enforcement. They are imposters,” read the advisory from Sussex.
As of March 9, five people have tested positive for coronavirus in New Jersey, raising the number of cases in the state to 11. In addition, there are 24 pending test cases at the state lab, New Jersey Department of Health officials said.
While pharmaceutical companies and government researchers are working on vaccines for coronavirus, a vaccine does not yet exist.
That means you should ignore any offers for vaccinations.
They might come in an email or in a phone call.
Be especially wary of calls that come from someone claiming to work for Medicare or your health insurance company.
“This is Medicare calling and you need to get on the list for a coronavirus vaccine,” a caller might say. “Just give us your credit card number to reserve your spot.”
Others are posing as officials from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) or the World Health Organization (WHO), and they try to fool people into giving up their personal information.
There are no vaccine waiting lists. There is no vaccine yet. And no legitimate health authority will call you and ask for your personal information.