Scammers Exploit California’s COVID-19 Contact Tracing Program

July 15, 2020

California Connected, California's contract tracing program, is a confidential process used by public health departments to slow the spread of COVID-19.

Under this program, public health representatives will telephone people who have tested positive, alert anyone that may have been exposed, while keeping Contact Tracing imagepersonally identifiable information confidential. Reps will also inquire about symptoms, offer testing guidance, and discuss next steps like self-isolation and medical care.

Scammers are impersonating contact tracers in order to profit from these interactions. Along with calls, scammers are sending out links in text messages about fictitious COVID-19 cases. They may ask for information such as your Social Security number, financial information, or other sensitive information NOT required for authentic contact tracing.

Legitimate contact tracers may call, email, text, or visit your home to collect information. They will only send you tests or emails indicating when they will contact you and will not ask you to click or download anything. The information they may ask for include your name, address, health information, and the names of place and people you have visited.

Tips on Identifying COVID-19 Scams:

  • Beware suspicious emails, phones calls, and text messages.
  • Contact your local health department to verify that the call or messages are valid, think before clicking on any links or suspicious attachments.

Additional information about California Connected & COVID-19: