UK & World News

  • 13 March 2014, 20:29

Hoax Cancer Email Prompts NICE Warning

Thousands of people have been sent a fake email, claiming to be from the National Institute for Heath and Care Excellence (NICE), which warns them they could have cancer.

Recipients are told that recent blood test results suggest they could have the disease.

It urges them to print off an attachment with the results and visit a doctor as soon as possible.

Recipient Paul Corsetold Sky News: "I've recently been unwell and had blood tests etc.

"This email I've been told is a scam but I am disgusted that whoever has done this has personal information about my blood tests

"I was understandably scared and upset and worried about how they have got this information."

Another distressed recipient wrote on Twitter: "One thing to spam, quite another to do it in such a grotesque way praying on the association and horror of THAT word. Genuinely disgusted."

NICE confirmed that the email had not been sent from the organisation.

A statement published on its website said: "NICE is aware that a spam email is being sent to members of the public regarding cancer test results.

"Please be assured that this email is not from NICE and we are currently investigating its origin."

In a separate statement, NICE Chief Executive Sir Andrew Dillon said the body was takingthe matter "very seriously" and had reported it to the police.

NICE is using its Twitter account to respond to concerned recipientswho say they have had blood tests recently, as the email claims.

It has saidthe faked results are not based on genuine blood tests and it does not hold patient data.

It told one user: "It may simply be the fact that lots of people have blood tests every day, and thousands seem to have received the email."

Recipients have been urged to delete the email immediately and not open any attachments.

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