Health officials are imploring Americans to answer their phones as contact tracers have been reaching out to millions of Americans to help keep them safe from the novel coronavirus.
What’s going on?
People have become so weary and untrusting of spam and phishing phone calls that they have chosen not to answer their calls. But contact tracers may be calling to let people know they may have been exposed to COVID-19, according to CNN.
- Contact tracing includes people identifying sick people, and then tracing anyone that person came into contact with.
- But there are calls that appear without a name, which raises suspicion.
So health officials’ message is clear — answer your phone.
There are some spam calls, though
Back in August, a phone scam started circulating throughout the country that featured callers pretending to be COVID-19 contact tracers to receive people’s person information, which I wrote about for Deseret.com.
- In one example, provided by the Montana attorney general, callers would tell people “I’m calling from your local health department to let you know that you have been in contact with someone who has COVID-19.”
- “Legitimate contact tracers will never ask you to pay a fee. Do not provide payment, and end the call,” according to a warning from the Office of Consumer Protection.