Europol warning on the illicit sale of false negative COVID-19 test certificates

01 February 2021
Press Release
Press Release/News

As long as travel restrictions remain in place due to the pandemic, it is very likely that criminals will seize the opportunity of producing and selling fake COVID-19 test certificates, warns a Europol Early Warning Notification published today.

Several cases have already emerged of fraudulent COVID-19 test certificates being sold to travellers:

  • A forgery ring selling negative test results to passengers was dismantled at the Charles de Gaulle Airport in Paris, France;
  • In the UK, fraudsters were caught selling bogus COVID-19 documents for GBP 100;
  • In December 2020, a fraudster was apprehended by the Spanish National Police for selling fake test results for EUR 40.

Given the widespread technological means available, in the form of high-quality printers and different software, fraudsters are able to produce high-quality counterfeit, forged or fake documents.

Member States are encouraged to share any relevant information on criminal activities related to fake COVID-19 test documentation with Europol.

Read Europol’s Early Warning Notification here