CAVE Task Force investigating COVID-19 testing scam

Crime News

AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF) – The Richmond County Sheriff’s Office and the Crimes Against the Vulnerable & Elderly Task Force (CAVE) are investigating an ongoing DNA scam involving fraudulent door-to-door COVID-19 tests.

Richmond County Deputies were called to the Maxwell House on Greene Street, Thursday around 10 a.m., in reference to reports of a DNA scam.

The scam reportedly consists of unknown individuals approaching residents for COVID-19 antibody testing, claiming they can also test for a genetic cancer gene. They also are allegedly offering gifts in exchange for participation.

The suspects are said to be asking for personal information, including Medicaid/Medicare numbers and blood samples. In some instances, they may ask for mouth swabs, as well.

Investigators state that only an individual’s doctor can authorize genetic testing, as unauthorized testing could leave a person open to identity fraud issues.

There also could be a significant negative impact from soliciting for COVID-19 antibody tests, in that those who have already taken a fraudulent test will then mistakenly not take a legitimate test while they wait for results that are not coming or are inaccurate.

The suspects are described as Hispanic women driving a black vehicle. They reportedly show ID badges identifying themselves as ‘Genetic Screening Technicians’ and present business cards reading ‘Youthful IV’.

If you encounter this situation, do not fall victim and please report it to the authorities.

Count on NewsChannel 6 for more details as they become available.


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