The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) has alerted local government units (LGUs) and the Philippine National Police to be on the lookout against scammers posing as Covid-19 contact tracers.

Interior Secretary Eduardo Año said that aside from the coronavirus, the public should also be wary of scammers who take advantage of the pandemic to extort money.

“Isa pang virus na kailangan pag-ingatan ng mga tao ang mga scammer na ito na sumasabay pa at nakukuhang manamantala ng kapwa ngayong krisis…. I urge all LGUs and our men and women of the PNP to immediately investigate these criminal activities,” Año said in a statement.

The Department of Health (DOH) earlier warned the public of scammers pretending to be members of DOH contact tracing teams and asking for personal information and money.

According to Año, the scammers start with bogus calls telling individuals that they were identified as close contacts of a Covid-19 patient. 

“Inuulit ko po, hinding-hindi po hihingi ng pera ang mga contact-tracing teams for their task is to track down and manage close contacts, reduce the spread of infection and offer diagnostic [services], counselling and treatment to confirmed Covid-19 cases. ‘Yun lamang po,” Año clarified.

He urged the public to report such scams to the DILG’s Hotline 911, the DILG-Public Assistance and Complaint Center (8925-0343), DOH’s Call Center Hotline (632 8651-7800 local 5003-5004) or John Ezekiel J. Hirro