The NHS has teamed up with Action Fraud and the National Crime Agency in issuing joint advice around the vaccine and that it is only available for free through the NHS. They will NEVER ask for payment.
The warning comes amid a number of reports of criminals attempting, and in some cases succeeding, to steal cash or personal details from people keen to get the vaccine.
In one extreme case, a man in London knocked on the door of a 92-year-old woman and administered her with a fake vaccine before taking a £160 payment which he told her would be reimbursed by the NHS. The City of London Police are currently investigating the incident.
In other cases, people are reporting suspicious text messages with a link to a booking site which mimics an NHS page, but asks for personal details including bank account numbers.
Con artists have also been known to use telephone calls to extract payments or bank details which can then be sold to organised criminal gangs or used to order and pay for goods online.
The NHS will never ask you for any payment details, PIN numbers, they will never arrive unannounced to administer a vaccine and will never ask you to forward any personal documents such as bills, wage slips etc.
If you receive a call you believe to be fraudulent, hang up. If you are suspicious about an email you have received, forward it to firstname.lastname@example.org. Suspicious text messages should be forwarded to the number 7726 which is free of charge.
If you believe you are the victim of a fraud, please report this to Action Fraud as soon as possible by calling 0300 123 2040 or visiting www.actionfraud.police.uk