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Mar. 4, 2021

How to Avoid COVID-19 Vaccine Scams

Scammers are taking advantage of the COVID-19 vaccination release, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Better Business Bureau (BBB). The FDA released several warning letters to companies attempting to sell illegitimate products.  

Be aware of the warning signs of vaccination scams.  

Here’s what you should know:  

  • You cannot pay to put your name on a vaccination waiting list.  

  • You cannot pay to receive the vaccine early. 

  • Offers for home vaccinations are illegitimate.  

  • Legitimate sources will not call, text or email you about the vaccine and ask for personal information such as your social security number (SSN), Medicare number, home address, bank account numbers, or credit card numbers.  

  • Calls, texts, emails and websites dedicated to early vaccine access are not legitimate.  

  • At the time of publication, there are only three FDA-approved and recommended COVID-19 vaccines (there are two others in trial phases): 

If you suspect a scam, report it to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) at ReportFraud.ftc.gov

If you receive the vaccine, do not post a photo of your vaccination card on social media. Your vaccination card will include sensitive information like your full name, birthday and vaccination location. Even if you have private accounts, assume that everything on the internet is public. Sharing the sensitive information on your card could make you vulnerable to identity theft.  

There are a number of ways to safely sign up for the vaccine:  

  • Visit the CDC’s VaccineFinder website.  

  • Find out if you are eligible, as well as your eligibility tier, by visiting your state’s Department of Health website.  

  • You may also be able to register for the vaccine through your municipal health department. 

For more information about the vaccine, visit the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) COVID-19 Vaccine webpage