Beware of coronavirus vaccine scams

Beware of coronavirus vaccine scams

After months of confusion and fear, there is finally a light at the end of the socially distanced tunnel: the coronavirus vaccine. Distribution is already underway, but whenever there’s big news, scammers aren’t far behind. Almost as soon as the news of the vaccine approval hit the headlines, a robocall went out in Rochester, NY, offering a front place in line at the modest price of just $79.99. Of course, the call was placed by a ring of scammers and paying the requested fee will not position individuals to receive the vaccine any sooner.

Don’t get scammed! Here’s all you need to know about coronavirus vaccine scams and how to avoid them:

Red flags

Beware of these signs of COVID-19 vaccine scams:

  • Advertisements for vaccines through social media platforms, email, or phone calls from unsolicited sources.
  • Offers to undergo additional medical testing or procedures when obtaining a vaccine.
  • Marketers offering to sell and/or ship doses of a vaccine, domestically or internationally, in exchange for payment.
  • Unsolicited emails or phone calls from someone claiming to represent a medical office, insurance company, or COVID-19 vaccine center requesting personal and/or medical information to determine your eligibility to participate in clinical vaccine trials or to help you obtain the vaccine.
  • Claims of FDA approval for a vaccine that cannot be verified.
  • Individuals contacting you in person, by phone, or by email to tell you the government or government officials require you to receive a COVID-19 vaccine.

Be proactive

Still worried about being targeted by a coronavirus vaccine scam? You can protect yourself by staying updated with the latest vaccine developments. Check your state’s health department’s website to learn about vaccine distribution in your state and look up general vaccine information at fda.gov.

If you believe you’ve been targeted by a coronavirus vaccine scam, report the scam to the FTC at ftc.gov. You also can file a complaint with your state attorney general through consumerresources.org.