As part of the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s multi-pronged approach to fighting the spread of the coronavirus, public health officials are scrambling to hire contact tracers.

The job of a contact tracer is to reach out to individuals who have tested positive for the coronavirus, or who may have been in contact with someone who recently tested positive for the disease. Contact tracers may ask questions about symptoms, and provide information about how to address exposure.

However, contact tracers will not ask for information regarding a social security number, or credit card numbers.

The US’ Better Business Bureau recently warned Americans to beware of illegitimate contact tracers, who are attempting to con people into sharing personal details, or who aim to have users click on malicious links that are embedded in text messages.

Users who take the bait and click on malicious links may enable hackers to surveil their devices, and to collect high-value information that will be sold on the dark web.

“As we move from beyond the work-from-home initiative to…the work-from-anywhere initiative…mobile security/endpoint security will all be a very fundamental part of…” what we need in order to avoid these types of scams, says one cyber security expert.

Regular software updates, data backups and multi-factor authentication can also help people circumvent phony contact tracing schemes.

For more information on the latest trends in contact tracing and in avoiding scams, check out this YouTube video.