Now this is going to sound like a scam, but I promise that it isn’t!
The UK government, having monumentally failed to implement any kind of emergency broadcast system (something which is baked into mobile phones, if the service is implemented to make use of it), had been relying on kindly asking the UK mobile phone operators if they minded please sending out a text to everyone on the network.
Realising that this wasn’t really sustainable, they have now spun up a new Coronavirus Information Service on WhatsApp. All you need to do is add the following contact to your address book…
Create a new Whatsapp chat with this contact and send a message (such as “Hi”) and it will immediately respond with some options for more information. By replying with the number of your choice, you can navigate the system and get up to date news and information from the UK government, for free.
I definitely recommend that you check out option 7 – Mythbusters.
Whilst this is aimed at people leaving in the UK, there’s no limitation on access it from anywhere, just remember to replace the “0” with “+44” to reach our national network.
And just to prove that this really isn’t a scam, here are a few articles about it…
- GOV.UK official statement
- Tech Crunch (website) article
- Telegraph (newspaper) article
- Metro (newspaper) article
- ITV (television channel) article