MALICIOUS spammers have sent emails to people across Greater Manchester telling them they have cancer.

The sickening messages have been received by people across the region, including Bolton, and the advice from health chiefs at the national Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) is to delete the email without opening it and not to click on any links.

They are investigating the origins of the message which has the subject line ‘important blood analysis result’.

Sir Andrew Dillon, NICE chief executive, said: “A spam email purporting to come from NICE is being sent to members of the public regarding cancer test results.

“This e mail is likely to cause distress to recipients since it advises that ‘test results' indicate they may have cancer.

“This malicious e mail is not from NICE and we are currently investigating its origin. We take this matter very seriously and have reported it to the police.”