HOUSTON – The FBI has issued a warning about a new type of scam related to antibody testing for the coronavirus.
According to the FBI, scammers are marketing fraudulent or unapproved antibody tests and could potentially provide false results and steal personal information like name, date of birth, social security numbers, and personal health information, which can later be used for insurance or identify fraud.
Some of the indicators of the scam include:
- Claims of FDA approval for antibody testing that cannot be verified
- Advertisements for antibody testing through social media platforms, email, telephone calls, online, or from unsolicited/unknown sources
- Marketers offering “free” COVID-19 antibody tests or providing incentives for undergoing testing
- Individuals contacting you in person, phone, or email to tell you the government or government officials require you to take a COVID-19 antibody test
- Practitioners offering to perform antibody tests for cash
If you come across any of the indicators listed by the FBI or to avoid falling for the scam, you should do the following:
- Check the FDA’s website (fda.gov) for an updated list of approved antibody tests and testing companies.
- Consult your primary care physician before undergoing any at-home antibody tests.
- Use a known laboratory approved by your health insurance company to provide the antibody testing.
- Do not share your personal or health information with anyone other than known and trusted medical professionals.
- Check your medical bills and insurance explanation of benefits (EOBs) for any suspicious claims and promptly reporting any errors to your health insurance provider.
- Follow guidance and recommendations from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and other trusted medical professionals.
If you or someone you know have been the victim of coronavirus-related fraud, the FBI says to immediately report it to the National Center for Disaster Fraud Hotline at (866) 720-5721 or justice.gov/disastercomplaintform.