In this very difficult time, many of us just feel like we want to help in whatever way we can. Be that through volunteering or donating to a particular charity. Unfortunately, there are people, though thankfully very few, who look for opportunities to take advantage of the kindness shown by volunteers and others.

Please be vigilant when coming across anyone asking for money online.  If you see a post on social media from a stranger asking for money due to unexpected unemployment or other money worries because of the pandemic, please do not offer them anything. This type of scam is increasingly common. It starts with someone asking for small amounts to help them out with food and bills and then escalates to large amounts for what seem like reasonable needs such as bills etc.

If you see a social media post like this, ignore it. If you are asked directly for money for food etc. then please ask that person to contact the Derby Covid Community Response Hub on 01332 640000 or email covidsupport@communityactionderby.org.uk The hub can help people with food and other types of support and has no shortage of volunteers waiting to help people.

Cllr Jonathan Smale, Cabinet Member for Communities, Neighbourhoods and Streetpride said:

“It’s awful that even during a pandemic there are some people who are trying to steal money by exploiting people’s kindness and generosity.

By directing people to the Community Hub we can be assured that we’re helping those who actually need support.”

If you are concerned or have suspicions you can report it the via the Citizens Advice Consumer helpline by calling 03454 040506 or online on the Citizens Advice Scams page.