NYC hairstylist to Michael Bloomberg, Tom Wolfe dies from coronavirus

Alberto Rottura — New York City hairstylist whose clients included bold names like Michael Bloomberg and Tom Wolfe — died after a weeks-long battle with the coronavirus, his family said.

Rottura, 77, passed away last Monday at Lenox Hill Hospital, where he had been fighting COVID-19 since early April.

The immigrant son of an Italian winemaker, Rottura moved to Manhattan as a teenager in 1960, before becoming a US citizen and opening his first salon at 23 years old, said his son Gianluca Rottura.

“He was a real renaissance man,” his son told The Post. “He really had a love for people and was very, very generous with everything he worked for — which was a lot.”

The elder Rottura, who studied hairdressing in Paris and London, befriended Judy Garland early in his career and traveled the world with her as her personal hairstylist for two years.

His salon, Alberto Dei Montecchi on Madison Ave. and E. 78th St., would eventually bring in clients that included the most prominent figures in the city — such as former mayor Michael Bloomberg, best-selling authors Mary Higgins Clark and Tom Wolfe, and former governor Eliot Spitzer before his bust in an escort scandal.

A jovial Rottura once said his well-heeled clients usually started as customers because of the women in their lives.

“A lot of the men we do here are usually the husband, boyfriend or lover of one of the women who are our clients,” Rottura told The New York Times in a 2009 profile.

But Rottura, who spoke five languages and became a fixture in his Upper East Side community, also had his hands in other businesses around the neighborhood. He opened the famed Sistina Restaurant and the wine store In Vino Veritas, still located on First Ave. and now run by Gianluca and another son, Gianbruno.

He also owned real estate in the neighborhood and let some of his tenants pay little to no rent, because he still understood the struggles of life in the city, family said.

“He had one guy in an apartment and charged him pretty much nothing,” Gianluca said. “He let him live practically rent-free … because he felt bad.”

Rottura is survived by his sons, his wife, Liliana, two grandchildren, a brother, a sister, and several nieces and nephews.

Gianluca said the hardest part is knowing his father died alone, unable to accept visitors because of a strict policy to keep infected patients isolated in order to control the spread of the virus.

“He was in a room all by himself, with a plastic tarp around him,” his son said. “We couldn’t see him. The only people he had contact with looked like astronauts.

“He was such a social guy … this was the exact opposite of who he was.”

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Timeline to a catastrophe: First five months of SAGE meeting notes

The definitive timeline of SAGE meetings: Five months of notes show how scientists and health officials initially wrote-off Covid as another Swine Flu leaving UK unprepared… then desperately tried to catch-up

  • SAGE minutes have been published by the UK government following pressure
  • They show how the virus was first seen as a SARS-type disease by the committee
  • But then tone changed and on March 16  they began recommending lockdown
  • Efforts then turned towards preventing a second wave of the coronavirus
  • And looking at acceptable measures for allowing schools to re-open again 
  • Here’s how to help people impacted by Covid-19

The first five months of SAGE meeting notes have revealed how scientists and health officials initially wrote-off coronavirus as another Swine flu before realising the error and desperately trying to catch up. 

The minutes, which cover 34 meetings held by the country’s top scientists and used in the government’s response to covid, were published for the first time.  

The body is split between independent experts and Government officials. Notes reveal that SAGE had to contend with incorrect assessments in the early days of the crisis.

Professor Chris Witty, left, Matt Hancock and professor of public health John Newton take the Downing Street press conference on May 21

Details on the testing and surveillance capacity of the UK was flawed and poor intelligence from oversees combined with a failure to learn from the Sars outbreak of 2003. 

The documents also show that there was a fear of overreacting to the coronavirus pandemic.

It is thought to have been borne out of a perceived overreaction to the Swine Flu pandemic of 2009.

Evidence gathering and analysis seems to have been prioritised over taking immediate action.  

The World Health Organisation’s health emergencies programme director Dr Mike Ryan told the Daily Telegraph: ‘If you need to be right before you move, you will never win.’

But the documents do show that SAGE caught up quickly and changed tack when the committee believed evidence required a new course of action. 

Minutes show how SAGE was able to quickly publicise and make the case for lockdown.

January 22: Nine days before first UK case, committee says people arriving from Wuhan should not be isolated

SAGE met for the first time in January as a ‘precautionary’ measure, 22 days after the virus was reported in China and nine days before the first case is identified in the UK.

The committee noted testing capacity in Wuhan has already been ‘overwhelmed’ and says there is evidence of person-to-person transmission.

In a relaxed tone it also talked about the then lack of evidence on whether individuals are infectious before showing symptoms and what the viral incubation period is.

Drawing on knowledge from SARS epidemic, they say individuals arriving in the UK from Wuhan ‘are no longer at risk if they show no symptoms for 14 days’ but says port of entry screening is ‘not advised’.

Closing in a calm fashion, they said: ‘The UK currently has good centralised diagnostic capacity for WN-CoV – and is days away from a specific test, which is scale-able across the UK in weeks.’

January 22: The first SAGE meeting focusing on the virus, which then appeared to have been cornered in China, ended with a positive and upbeat tone

Another medic in hazmat suit is seen checking the medical equipment inside the hospital’s intensive care units. Nine people have been killed by the virus since it emerged last month

A health worker wearing protective gear pictured in Wuhan, the epicentre of the coronavirus outbreak

February: Restrictions on transport will buy, at most, 15 days before an epidemic hits – but the NHS needs a month to prepare

Three days after the first case is identified on British soil, SAGE starts warning of a fast approaching epidemic.

It predicts the number of cases are doubling every four to five days, while the number of cases in China could be as high as 300,000.

Turning to transport restrictions, however, they said that even reducing the number of imported infections by 90 per cent would only buy an estimated 15 days.

‘Only a month of additional preparation time for the NHS would be meaningful,’ they said. ‘To prevent imported infections along these lines would require draconian and coordinated measures, because direct flights from China are not the only route for infected individuals to enter the UK.’ 

January 28: SAGE’s early understanding of the virus based on data coming out of China is listed above

February 3: SAGE warns restrictions can only buy up to 15 days – falling short of the month the NHS will need to prepare

As Britain dithered China got to work building hospitals from scratch. Pictured is a hospital for around 2,000 medical workers to treat patients in Leishanshan or Thunder God Hospital, which occupies 14 acres and has 1,600 beds

Diggers pictured arriving at the hospital building site on January 29, as the UK was yet to declare its first coronavirus case 

It warns that travel restrictions at this point, even targeting only Wuhan, would have a limited impact as the virus could also arrive from other countries. 

The committee meets nine times during this month. 

On February 11 they said the government should keep working using ‘influenza pandemic assumptions’, saying an epidemic could peak around two to three months from then.

‘It is expected that all parts of the UK would be impacted at about the same time,’ they said, ‘with only small delays between regions’.

‘When there is sustained transmission in the UK, contact tracing will no longer be useful,’ they said.

February 11: SAGE shifts away from SARS and suggests that the government should work on the assumption coronavirus is going to behave like an influenza pandemic

February 25: Lockdown is mentioned for the first time

SAGE suddenly switches its tone on February 25 to warn that interventions should seek to ‘contain, delay and reduce the peak’ of coronavirus ‘in that order’.

‘SAGE discussed a paper modelling four non-pharmaceutical interventions: University and school closures, home isolation, household quarantine and social distancing, with use of interventions in combination,’ they said.

‘All measures require implementation for a significant duration in order to be effective.’

Despite the mention it was still almost a month before the UK introduced a lockdown as ministers considered alternative outcomes.

February 25: SAGE switches its tone to lockdown for the first time, reflecting growing concern

March: UK has 10,000 cases at least and is four to five weeks behind Italy, meaning testing is ‘now a priority’

 As early as March 3 SAGE began to warn that an agreement on ‘optimal timing’ for behavioural and social interventions will be needed.

The committee also starts to discuss social distancing for the over 65s which it says will ‘have a significant effect on overall deaths and peak demand fro critical care beds, but will not significantly reduce overall transmission’.

Proposing a timeline on March 5, they suggest symptomatic individuals should start isolating with their families to delay the virus’ spread, with isolation for the over 65s to be implemented two weeks later.

A patient suffering from COVID-19 is seen in an intensive care unit (ICU) in Covid ward

SAGE warned that the UK was tracking Italy’s trajectory as early as March (Bergamo pictured)

March 5: SAGE warns that there are no scientific grounds  to move away from a containment focus in the UK

March 10: UK is predicted to have thousands of cases. At the time only 373 had been identified

March 10: PHE is asked to work out how it will get more tests, seen to be a key measure

March 13: SAGE warns that the virus may be moving across the UK faster than expected

On March 10 they suggest the UK has around 10,000 cases with ‘transmission underway’. At this time the country had only identified 373 cases officially.

There is also a sense of growing fury with PHE, as it’s recommended more tests are ‘now the priority’.

‘A test for frontline diagnostics may come from the private sector,’ they said, and recommended PHE should immediately assess how it could scale up testing from 1,00 to 10,000 a week.

Adding to mounting concern, they said: ‘The UK is considered to be four to five weeks behind Italy but on a similar curve (six to eight weeks behind if interventions are applied)’.

On March 13 they warn the UK has ‘more cases… than SAGE previously expected at this point, and we may therefore be further ahead on the epidemic curve’.

They call for social distancing measures to be implemented ‘soon’, and say they are keen to make their modelling available ‘to the public and fellow scientists’.

SAGE often drew comparisons with Italy at this time, where the virus was a few weeks ahead. Pictured is a nurse with a patient in Contugno 

March 16: Calls for social distancing ‘as soon as possible’

 The SAGE committee, already stating the virus is accelerating faster than previously thought, calls for social distancing measures to be implemented ‘as soon as possible’.

‘These additional measures will need to be accompanied by a significant increase in testing and the availability of near real-time data flows to understand their impacts,’ they said.

The number of cases has also been ramped up to an estimated 5,000 to 10,000 new infections a day, with the total number doubling every five to six days. 

By March 16 the UK had identified 1,543 cases and recorded 40 deaths due to coronavirus

March 16: SAGE advises that social distancing measures are introduced ‘as soon as possible’

March 16: They also forecast there are up to 10,000 new cases a day in the country, with the total number doubling every five to six days

March 16: The committee also piled pressure on to PHE to find a way to ramp up testing

Two days later the committee recommends schools should be closed ‘as soon as practicable’ to prevent NHS intensive care capacity being exceeded.

Discussing the closure of restaurants, bars, cafes and offices, they said: ‘If interventions are required, it would be better to act early’. 

Despite the warning the government did not ask bars, restaurants, cafes and gyms to close until March 20, and did not begin a lockdown until March 23.

March 23: UK announces nationwide lockdown

SAGE also held a meeting on this day where it warned there is a ‘higher reproduction number’ of coronavirus in the country than previously anticipated.

Some measures had already been brought in and while they indicated ‘significant changes’, they said there is still ‘room for improvement in compliance rates’.

Noting changes in London, the then epicentre, they said footfall in the capital’s transport hubs had dropped by 90 per cent but had not decreased as much at retail and food outlets.

The number of people in parks had also trebled, they said.

Boris Johnson told the UK to lockdown on March 23 (pictured). He was admitted to hospital with the virus on April 5

Police gather at Newcastle’s Monument, moving on people who gather in a bid keep the population social distancing in order to stop the coronavirus spreading on Monday

March 23: The day the lockdown is announced SAGE urges more action on testing, and says they aim to get tests to 110,000 by mid-April, 15 days before Matt Hancocks lower target of 100,000 tests

They also began targeting 110,000 coronavirus tests a day by mid-April, more than 15 days ahead of Matt Hanock’s May 1 target.

‘NHS testing capacity in the UK is currently at around 5,000 a day, to be increased to 15,000 a day by mid-April,’ they said.

‘A platform in partnership with the private sector has been established to aim to increase capacity to 110,000 a day by mid-April.

April: Preventing a second wave with vaccines and social distancing

With lockdown in place, SAGE turned its attention to working to avoid a second wave so that the damaging measures do not need to be re-imposed.

They noted that therapeutics and a vaccine would both play a ‘critical role’ in the permanent lifting of restrictions.

The committee also began to discuss whether face masks could work – first saying that despite ‘weak evidence’ the virus may be able to survive on them for up to seven days.

On April 30 they also advised for ‘comprehensive availability and deployment’ of the seasonal flu vaccine this winter.

A coronavirus vaccine developed in Britain may not stop those treated being infected. Pictured: A volunteer is injected with the vaccine in Oxford University’s trial

Vaccine trials were launched at Oxford University. They have been moved to human trials despite mounting criticism

April 7: As lockdown takes effect SAGE reports that Covid-19s spread appears to be slowing

April 7: They also begin to consider a possible exit strategy which will not cause a second wave

They also continued to advise ministers on the lockdown, continuously noting that case numbers had first been arrested before beginning to fall.

‘Relatively small changes to social distancing measures could push R back above one in the community,’ they said in early April, ‘It is therefore too early to recommend releasing any measures’.

By April 7 they had already noted transmission ‘may be slowing’ and, two days later that the virus could have ‘reached its peak’ with hospital admissions ‘stabilising’ and the number of people in ICU ‘flattening’.

By April 30 they said: ‘Hospital admissions are declining consistently across the country’.

SAGE also noted that it welcomed the government’s decision to release the names of the committee.

Prime minister Boris Johnson was admitted to hospital was the virus on April 5. 

Matt Hancock set a target for 100,000 tests a day by May 1, 15 days behind the recommendation of SAGE

At this point SAGE continued to say that cases were stabalising. Pictured is the ExCel Centre in London, which was transformed into an NHS Nightingale hospital

Inside London’s ExCel hospital which has been mothballed at present as cases in the UK drop

April 30: Vaccines are considered crucial to finding a way out of the pandemic. SAGE also advised that stocks of seasonal flu vaccine should be prepared

April 23: Warning about care homes

SAGE notes for the first time a ‘small but significant’ portion of deaths are related to care homes, rather than hospitals.

On April 30 they added, ‘understanding the causes of transmission in care homes is more challenging’ before listing limiting factors.

April 23: SAGE warns that there is a growing number of deaths in the UK’s care homes

May: Schools should only re-open if ‘effective measures are in place to monitor the effects and to respond to cases’

Minutes published by the government revealed that SAGE continued to discuss how to ease lockdown restrictions without causing a second wave in early May.

A large portion of this focused on schools, and whether or not they should be asked to unbolt their gates to pupils again.

SAGE advised that, for this to happen, ‘effective measures should be in place to monitor the effects of any change in schools, and to respond to cases within schools.’

Schools are set to return on Monday with social distancing measures in place. Pictured is Grove Road Primary School in Tring, Hertfordshire

May 11: SAGE releases its advice on bringing back schools to the government, saying effective monitoring measures will be needed. Pupils are set to return on June 1 despite ongoing alleged problems with the track and trace system

‘Indirect effects of re-opening schools (regardless of which option is taken) are likely to have a greater impact on transmission than schools themselves (e.g. work-related reopening, behaviour changes),’ they said.

‘For a variety of reasons re-opening options relating to younger children are lower risk than those related to older children’.

They also note previous work which showed young children may be less susceptible to infection, up to the age of 13, although it is not clear whether transmissibility by children is lower in adults.

The government has asked pupils in Reception, four and five years old, Year One,  five and six years old, and Year Six, aged nine to ten years old, to go back to school on Monday.

As schools prepare to return to work thousands flock to the coast. Pictured: Visitors and sunbathers flock to Durdle Door at Lulworth in Dorset on a scorching hot sunny day

People in England have been urged not to ‘tear the pants out’ of new looser lockdown rules. Pictured,sunseekers in Parsons Green, Fulham yesterday evening

However, this is being done against a backdrop of issues getting the contact-tracing system up and running, which appears to be against SAGE guidance.

SAGE has said that for this system to be effective it must catch at least 80 per cent of contacts and isolate those with Covid-19 within 48 hours, meaning a rapid test turnaround is needed.

In a meeting on May 7 they also criticised the government’s idea of ‘bubbles’, stating they pose ‘potential unforseen risks’ and could lead to the establishment of transmission networks.

‘As steps are taken to ease the lockdown,’ they said, ‘each needs to be accompanied by very clear communication of the continued public health justification for remaining restrictions.’ 

May 11: Boris Johnson announces the first easing of lockdown restrictions

The Prime Minister announced the first moves to ease lockdown.

He said anyone who can’t work from home is encouraged to go back to work, allowed the public unlimited outdoor exercise and gave permission to drive to other destinations.

However, as minutes have only been published up to May 7, we cannot see what scientific advice was followed. 

‘Ministers must decide’: Sir Patrick Vallance defends government’s right to decide when to ease lockdown

Sir Patrick Vallance, above at the daily press conference in Downing Street on Thursday, says it is up to ministers to make decisions on lockdown and for Sage to advise

The chair of the government’s Sage board has said it is for the government to decide when to ease lockdown measures, after one professor on the advisory panel claimed there was a risk to changing the rules now.

Sir Patrick Vallance, who heads up the advisory board of scientists guiding the government through this pandemic, backed Mr Johnson’s decision by saying it is up to politicians to make such decisions.

Boris Johnson has announced that, from Monday, people will be permitted to meet in groups of up to six people, shops will reopen and some children will go back to school.

However Professor John Edmunds, an epidemiologist at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, said the Prime Minister had ‘clearly made a political decision’ because the threat of a second peak remains high.

Writing in The Sunday Telegraph, Sir Patrick explained Sage was only there to advise politicians, who have the final say on what to do with evidence presented to them.

Sir Patrick, the Chief Scientific Adviser to the Government since March 2018, wrote: ‘Science advice to Cobr and to ministers needs to be direct and given without fear or favour. But it is advice. Ministers must decide and have to take many other factors into consideration.’

The chair of Sage explained the advisory board was not infallible, writing: ‘There is a range of opinions in all of discussions and there is wide reading of the latest research, but what Sage endeavours to do is come down to a position or a range of positions, to provide options ministers could consider and explain the uncertainties and assumptions inherent in that science and evidence.’  

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Biden staffers donate to bail fund for Minnesota protesters: report

Campaign staffers for presumptive Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden have donated to a group in Minnesota that is paying the bail for people arrested during the protests over the death of George Floyd by a white police officer, according to a report.

At least 13 members of the former vice president’s campaign made donations to the Minnesota Freedom Fund, which opposes cash bail to avoid being jailed before trial, Reuters reported on Saturday.

The fund uses donations to pay bail fees in Minneapolis.

Andrew Bates, a Biden campaign spokesman, told the news service that Biden opposes the institution of cash bail as a “modern day debtors prison.”

Bates declined to answer questions about whether the donations have been coordinated with the campaign.

President Trump’s re-election campaign in a statement to Reuters on Saturday said it was “disturbing” that Biden’s team “would financially support the mayhem that is hurting innocent people and destroying what good people spent their lives building.”

In a speech at Cape Canaveral after the SpaceX launch, Trump said he understood the “pain that people are feeling” and supports “the right of peaceful protesters.”

“But what we are now seeing on the streets of our cities has nothing to do with justice or with peace,” he said. “The memory of George Floyd is being dishonored by rioters, looters, and anarchists.”

The report said it’s unclear how many arrests have been made in Minnesota since the protests broke out following Floyd’s death last Monday.

Derek Chauvin, who has been fired from the Minneapolis police force, has been charged with third-degree murder and manslaughter.

Video images showing Chauvin pressing his knee into Floyd’s neck sparked protests around the country seeking justice for Floyd and the arrest of the three officers with Chauvin.

Colleen May, who describes herself as a Biden campaign organizer in South Carolina, Florida and Wisconsin, posted her $50 donation to the Minnesota Freedom Fund.

“It is up to everyone to fight injustice,” she said.

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Woman shows how to unclog hair-filled shower drain in minutes using baking soda and vinegar

A WOMAN has shown how to unclog a hair-filled shower drain in a matter of minutes, by using baking soda and vinegar.

Posting on TikTok as idk_bails, the cleaning novice said the drain was "really clogged" with hair – and we're sure lots of girls can relate.

After reading you could fix it with a mixture of baking soda and vinegar, the woman decided to give it a go.

But the hack got off to a bad start, when she realised her drain was so clogged that even the baking soda wouldn't go down it.

Speaking to the camera, she said: "It's almost midnight and my shower drain was really clogged. This isn't drugs I swear, it's baking soda.

"I read online that if you fill your drain with a cup of baking soda and then a cup of vinegar it should dissolve your hair and stuff.

"But it's so clogged it (the baking soda) won't even go down the drain.

"I've probably got like a quarter cup down there and it won't go down.

"Oh well, it said to wait a few minutes and then put vinegar down it, so I guess that's what I'm going to do. I hope this doesn't explode."

After adding the vinegar, the baking soda immediately started to fizz and bubble.

She later added: "OK I'll pour a little bit more, it does that every time.

"Oh s*** I just heard it start to drain. OK it smells awful, but it worked."

The video of her simple tip has more than 14.4 million views, 2.9 million likes and 3,700 comments.

We previously revealed how cleaning fanatics are soaking their loo seats in the bath to clean them – but some reckon it’s just too gross.

While one mum revealed how heating up washing detergent got her grubby microwave sparkling clean in a matter of minutes.

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Juventus plan to show hologram of Cristiano Ronaldo and Co during games to make up for missing Serie A fans – The Sun

JUVENTUS may project a hologram of Cristiano Ronaldo and his team-mates onto their empty stands to make up for a lack of fans when Serie A returns.

Top-flight Italian football will resume action on June 20 after Covid-19 brought fixtures to a halt.

Serie A has not seen a ball kicked since March 9 with Italy one of the countries hit hardest by the coronavirus.

With the second highest death toll in Europe the country has been marred by the crisis and football will return behind closed doors as the world edges towards a return to normality.

As fans will be absent from the Allianz Stadium, reigning champions Juventus are conjuring up ways to add some excitement to proceedings in an empty stadium.

According to Corriere dello Sport, one of the methods proposed is projecting a hologram of superstar Ronaldo and his team-mates across the empty stadium.

It is still early on in planning but it is thought that Juve are aiming to put on a show while not distracting the players on the pitch.

Other football teams have come up with unique solutions to playing behind closed doors – German side Borussia Monchengladbach are filling their stadium with cardboard cut-outs.

With lockdown eased and the hospitality sector starting to reopen its doors in Italy, plans are underway for how football fans can finally return to cheer on their team live from the stadium.

Regulations permitting events of up to 300 people in a closed setting and up to 1,000 in an open-air venue have been been announced in the latest government decree.

The Italian outlet claim that if seats are 45cm wide, social distancing could theoretically be followed with fans in one of every three seats.

Football Italia report that Lecce president Saverio Sticchi Damiani is considering a rotation system where the club's 20,000 season-ticket holders could share chances to attend games.

Other countries, including Poland, Serbia and Russia, have made it clear they intend to open grounds but with only 25 per cent of their capacity in use.

The Premier League announced it will return on June 17 and in Spain La Liga will start on June 8.

German competition the Bundesliga has already successfully completed three matchdays after restarting on May 16.



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7 coronavirus scams to avoid as Action Fraud reveals victims have lost £4.7million

CRIMINALS have conned people out of almost five million pounds through scams related to the coronavirus outbreak.

From fake couriers pretending to be the police, to a rise in online shopping scams, more than two thousands people have been victims, Action Fraud has confirmed.

⚠️ Read our coronavirus live blog for the latest news & updates

The organisation said a total of £4.7million has reportedly been lost by over 2,057 victims, which is roughly £2,190 each.

This includes 11,206 reports of coronavirus-related phishing emails, from criminals using the virus to con people to give away their money.

While there are always scams to be aware of, because we’re all spending so much more time at home because of the coronavirus lockdown, Action Fraud says it’s seen a rise in online fraud.

In April it said fake government scams were circulating to do with tax refunds and council tax payments.

While at the start of the lockdown, a Sun investigation found 16,000 internet-domain names had been set up with the intention of conning unsuspecting members of the public.

It has now listed the seven most common types of scam it’s seen since the start of the coronavirus pandemic

The seven most common coronavirus scams

Courier Fraud

Action Fraud said it’s seen a rise in people carrying out courier fraud, whereby criminals will come to your door to try and scam you.

It usually involves the criminal pretending to be from the police or another trusted organisation such as your bank.

They will come to your door and attempt to get you to hand over your bank details or your cash, if you have any at home.

Online shopping

As so many more of us are at home, due to the lockdown, we are also using online shopping more than we normally would.

This is because trips to the shops have only been for essential items, and even now the restrictions are being lifted slightly, many people aren’t able to leave their house because they are shielding.

If you buy something from a seller online, and it doesn’t arrive, this is a form of online shopping fraud.

Computer software fraud

There’s no IT desk at home so we’re all having to deal with technical problems on our own, and this includes security.

Action Fraud is warning people to be wary of cold calls or unsolicited emails from people offering to help with computer problems.

Lender loan fraud

The coronavirus has had a huge impact on the finances of millions of people, and as a result lots of us are feeling worried and anxious about this and could be more susceptible to fraud.

Those who carry out “lender loan” fraud are using the outbreak to tell people they can approve loans without seeing their credit history, asking for upfront fees for loans, or taking a payment for a loan but not actually giving them the loan.

Pension liberation and investment fraud

The coronavirus may be an opportunity for criminals to get hold of your life savings or retirement fund through fake investment opportunities.

If you’re called or emailed with an offer that sounds too good to be true, it’s probably a scam.

Mandate fraud

Another way fraudsters are using the outbreak to try and con more people is through mandate fraud.

This is when a criminal will persuade you to change a direct debit, standing order, or bank transfer mandate in order to transfer your cash to their account.

Phishing fraud

More than 10,000 phishing emails have been reported to Action Fraud so far, with relation to the virus.

These can be for a variety of reasons but usually trick those opening them into clicking malicious links which could lead to criminals stealing their personal details.


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Princess Diana used to take Prince William and Prince Harry on 'secret' trips to McDonalds for Happy Meal toys

SHE might have had access to the world's top chefs – but when Princess Diana wanted to treat her sons, she'd simply take them to McDonald's.

According to former royal chef Darren McGrady, Diana would regularly take Prince William and Prince Harry out of Kensington Palace for Happy Meal.

Speaking to Marie Claire, Darren tried to explain that he could make them burgers and fries for them to enjoy in Palace grounds.

But the mum-of-two insisted that her boys loved the toys that came in Happy Meals and enjoyed taking them on the "secret" trips.

He said: "I remember the Princess came into the kitchen one day and said, 'Cancel lunch for the boys I'm taking them out, we're going to McDonald's.

"And I said, 'Oh my god – your Royal Highness, I can do that, I can do burgers.' And she said, 'No, it's the toy they want."

He continued: "The boys loved McDonald's, and going out to pizza, and having potato skins—sort of the American foods.

"They were royal princes but had children's palates."

What's more, the royal's s former butler Paul Burrell has previously revealed that a trip to McDonald's was Diana's "Saturday night ritual" with the boys.

Paul told the Mirror: “The three of them would nip to McDonald’s for a Big Mac and fries before coming back to watch Blind Date."

In more Royal Family news, Royal fans were reduced to tears as Prince William opened up about ‘trauma’ of losing Diana in mental health documentary.

And we took a look inside Prince Charles’ VERY messy office with papers strewn everywhere, photos of Camilla & his grandkids’ rainbow art.

Plus Prince Harry will be a ‘lost soul’ living in Los Angeles as he’s not ‘as tough’ as Meghan Markle, an expert claimed.

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Kittens belonging to rare cat breed look like adorable werewolves

A woman has shared photos of her kittens, who belong to a rare cat breed and look like tiny werewolves. 

Dorota Strychar, 36, from Legnica, Poland, is a breeder of Lykoi cats, who are often likened to werewolves.

Dorota says she is the first breeder of Lykoi cats in Poland and welcomed her first litter in October 2017. 

She has since been sharing photos of dozens of adorable kittens and gaining thousands of followers online. 

Dorota said that, despite their looks, Lykois are actually very playful and happy felines. 

When Lykoi cats are young, they look similar to the hairless Sphynx cat but don’t share a relation.

DNA testing has been done by the University of California Davis to confirm that Lykoi cats do not carry the Sphynx or Devon Rex – cats that are tall-eared and short-haired – gene.

The Lykoi is a natural mutation from a domestic shorthair. The mutation is fairly new and has occurred in domestic cats over the last 20 years.

Dorota said: ‘Lykoi are very active cats, they need lots of attention from their owners, they are cheerful and playful cats.

‘They are not difficult to keep, but they want to have a relationship with the owner and they need a lot of food because of how active they are.

 ‘I am also a breeder of Russian Blue cats and they are great together.’

Dorota says she is currently keeping four adult Lykois and six kittens that she sells at around £2,000 each. 

One user commented on one of Dorota’s photos, saying: ‘These kittens are sweet and adorable.’

Another one said: ‘They look like they come from another planet, incredible!’

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When it comes to reopening, it’s not health vs. wealth — it’s health vs. health

An extended “lockdown cure” may kill far more Americans than COVID-19. That sobering reality underpins the Trump administration’s strategy to work with America’s 50 states to get the nation back to work as quickly and safely as possible.

When little was known about the virus in March, the prudent course was to lock down all nonessential parts of the economy, slow the spread and “flatten the curve.” Patriotic Americans fought this war against the China virus not by grabbing a rifle, but simply staying home.

President Trump’s actions, ably orchestrated by Vice President Mike Pence’s task force, likely succeeded in saving hundreds of thousands of American lives. While New York and New Jersey suffered unusually high rates of infection and saw their hospital systems stretched to the limit, the rest of the country weathered the attack.

This flattening of the curve came at great cost. Some 44 million Americans have filed for unemployment insurance. In the first three months of 2020, we shed roughly $75 bill­­ion from what was a robustly growing economy just 90 days ago — and are facing a further loss of $750 billion in the second quarter.

The federal government and the Federal Reserve have collectively committed close to $10 trillion in stimulus, and there may be much more debt financing to come.

The left has sought to portray the president’s aggressive reopening gambit as a heartless trade-off between “saving lives” versus “saving jobs.” That’s a false dichotomy. It’s about health versus health.

Yes, the China virus directly kills American citizens. But the virus’ economic shocks also kill indirectly through two lethal vectors.

First: High unemployment boosts rates of depression, suicide, drug overdoses and comorbidities associated with illnesses such as cancer, diabetes and heart disease. We already know this from the impact of China’s dismantling of the American Midwest in the 2000s.

A 2000 study in the Quarterly Journal of Economics found that a ­1 point increase in unemployment is associated with a 1 percent increase in suicides. A 2017 Centre for Economic Policy Research study found that China’s joining the World Trade Organization, and the resulting job losses, were associated with rising drug and alcohol poisoning, crime and childhood poverty — and a fall in total fertility.

A second vector has do with Americans foregoing a wide range of elective procedures as a result of lockdowns, from mammograms, pap smears and breast-cancer surgeries to arthroplasties, colonoscopies and bone-marrow and lung biopsies. Tens of thousands received these procedures in early January; there were essentially none performed as of early April.

This is deadly. A two-month delay in receiving breast-cancer surgery is associated with a 10 percent mortality increase; a delay of a month or more in receiving heart surgery is associated with a 60 percent mortality increase.

The White House Council of Economic Advisers estimates that decreased health-care utilization for non-COVID illnesses during the lockdown has resulted in 1.8 million to 2.7 million total years of American life lost by the end of May.

The council also estimates that unless we resume economic activity by the second quarter of 2021, this may result in an additional 7,100 drug overdose deaths, an additional 2,800 suicides, a 10 percent increase in spousal abuse and 15 million years of life lost.

If recovery were delayed for another year, we may lose 16.8 million to 17.7 million years of American life, equivalent to a 0.05 year reduction in life expectancy per American.

This, then, is the far more complex calculus that the Trump White House has tried to manage. We can’t follow some of the pied pipers of the medical profession who would have us hide in our homes until the virus either burns itself out, we develop herd immunity or a successful and widely available vaccine comes to market.

We must balance health versus health: lives saved by a lockdown against many more lives lost or damaged by a bleak economy.

The president has made the courageous decision to move boldly forward to reopen. That’s real leadership. And if there is any leader who can help us quickly rebuild, it will be the president who, over the last 3 ¹/₂ years, built the strongest economy in modern history.

He can, and will, certainly do that again — and American lives will be longer and healthier for it.

Tyler Goodspeed is a member of the White House Council of Economic Advisers. Peter Navarro is assistant to the president for trade and manufacturing policy.

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Ariana Biermann, 18, heads to Arizona to see hairstylist and dye hair dark brown – The Sun

Ariana Biermann, 18, headed to Arizona to see her hairstylist and get her hair died.

The new high school grad went from blonde to dark brown once Arizona's shutdown laws were lifted.

Ariana traveled from her native Atlanta to see her hairstylist Chrissy Rasmussen from Habit Salon in Gilbert, Arizona.

She captioned a pic of her new do: "thank u @hairby_chrissy <33 ur the best."

On another pic she wrote: "i love you arizona."

Salons in Arizona have been open May 8.

Her older sister Brielle joined her for the trip and also had her brunette locks colored.

Ariana's mom and former Real Housewives star Kim Zolciack told People Chrissy has actually mailed Kim her hair dye formula.

Kim's husband Kroy has stepped in to apply the color she relayed: "Chrissy gave him the formula so he's mixing and doing all this big concoction and it's a process.

"We argue the whole time he colors my hair too. It's the only time there's a little bit of animosity because my bangs are really important. It's all my own hair in front, so I just slide the wig back so he can color the roots."

Before Arianna's Arizona visit, she modeled bikinis from her mom's new swimsuit lin, Salty K.

She wore pastel pink string bikini while hanging out in the pool on a giant float.

Brielle sported a green bikini with purple flowers

Swimsuitline founder Kim donned a pink halter string bikinis and matching headband on her own Instagram.

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