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BBB warns of scammers selling phony COVID-19 antibody tests

BBB warns of scammers selling phony COVID-19 antibody tests
Posted at 1:56 PM, May 19, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-19 13:57:02-04

The Better Business Bureau is warning the public to be aware of phony antibody tests that promise to tell you if you’ve contracted the novel coronavirus.

These types of antibody tests exist for those who believe they may have contracted the virus but didn’t show symptoms of COVID-19. However, the BBB says scammers are cashing in on the demand for the tests.

According to the BBB, those who have fallen victim to these scams received a robocall or were directed to a website that looked like a clinic or medical supply company offering the antibody tests. Some reportedly promise results in 10 minutes.

To get a test, officials say victims are asked to complete a form or enter their credit card details.

In some cases, scammers say the test involves an easy at-home testing kit or the tests are allegedly offered through a clinic. But in all versions, the BBB says those selling the test are short on details.

“They aren’t willing or able to provide any information about how the test works, where it is sourced, and what laboratory processes it,” said the BBB.

The BBB says not to fall for these scams. The tests are not USDA approved and will not give accurate results. In fact, victims may never even receive an actual test kit.

“Either way, scammers will have made off with your money and your personal information,” said the BBB.

The BBB offered these tips to avoid the fake coronavirus tests:

· Want a test? Talk to your doctor: If you want an antibody test, reach out to your healthcare provider. They can help you figure out if the test will be covered by insurance and where to find a legitimate clinic. If you don't have a primary care physician, check out the official website of your local health department for more information on testing availability.

· Do research before buying: Before you agree to anything, do some investigating. Research any claims the company makes. Start with searching BBB.org to see they are BBB Accredited, have good reviews, and if there are complaints or scam reports associated with their business name.

· Understand your options: The Center for Disease Control and Prevention has a detailed guide to testing for COVID-19. Understand the different tests available and what you need.

· Never share your personal information with strangers: Only make purchases and share your personal information with people and companies you know and trust.

Global Coronavirus Tracker:

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Data from The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins University.