Fake COVID-19 testing websites seek to harvest your data

The BBB says some websites that appear in online searches for COVID-19 testing sites may not be real.

“You fill out an online appointment form with personal, insurance and medical information. In some cases, a small fee is paid. But, on the day of the appointment, the pharmacy has no record of your booking…the fake form was used as a phishing device to obtain personal information,” the BBB explained in a press release.

In a more elaborate version, the BBB says people are asked to go to an in-person location that collects a lot of data before a test is done, but the results never come. It has not been reported whether there have been such cases in Wisconsin or Minnesota.

The BBB offers several tips to make sure you’re signing up for a legitimate test:

  • Visit state, tribal, local, or territorial health department websites to find an authorized testing site.
  • Beware of similar websites. Check the URL to make sure there are no misspellings or unknown names, and that there is a “padlock” icon in the URL bar indicating that the website is secure .
  • Beware of unsolicited calls and messages offering COVID tests.
  • Beware of people who insist that you pay for a test, especially if they say it will cost hundreds of dollars. COVID-19 tests are free at US health centers and some pharmacies.
  • Read the fine print. Ask where the personal information will be stored, if it is secure, and which lab will process the results.

LINK: WDIO COVID-19 Information Center