As COVID-19 cases grow in our community, the chances that you may have been near someone who has the disease is increasing. Because of the contagious nature of the disease, health officials use contact tracing to try to identify people who may have been exposed to the virus before they show symptoms. California has a contact tracing program called California Connected. Unfortunately, scammers have taken advantage of the program in an attempt to defraud you.

Scammers are impersonating contact tracers so that they can profit from the current public health emergency. Along with calls, scammers are sending out links in text messages about fictitious COVID-19 cases. Scammers may ask for information such as your social security number, financial information, and other sensitive information not required for authentic contact tracing. The Federal Trade Commission wants you to know:

  • Real contact tracers will NOT ask you for money.
  • Contact tracing does NOT require your bank account or credit card number.
  • Legitimate contact tracers will NEVER ask for your Social Security number.
  • Your immigration status doesn't matter for contact tracing, so real tracers won't ask.
  • Do not click on a link in a text or email.

Legitimate contact tracers may call, email, text, or visit your home to collect information. They will only send you texts or emails indicating when they will contact you and will not ask you to click or download anything. The information a legitimate contact tracer may ask you for include: your name and address, health information, and the names of places and people you have visited.

You can find information about California Connected at In Santa Barbara County, you can find COVID-19 information at In Ventura County, you can find COVID-19 information at