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DEFENDERS: Look out for scammers selling fake vaccines


As coronavirus vaccines are distributed across the country, scammers are taking advantage of consumers eager for a vaccine. 

Cybersecurity agencies are warning consumers about a new scam that could involve individuals posing as health officials or doctors and offering to sell a coronavirus vaccine or to help consumers keep track of when they might be able to get it. 

Experts say scammers are doing this through texts, emails and advertisements. 

The FBI says to be on the lookout for the following as it could be a scam: 

  • If you are asked to pay out of pocket for the vaccine.
  • You are asked to pay to put your name on a vaccine waiting list or to get early access
  • Advertisements for vaccines through social media platforms, email, telephone calls, online, or from unsolicited/unknown sources
  • Marketers offering to sell or ship doses of vaccine for payment. 

The Food and Drug Administration also issued similar warnings about vaccine scams circulating. 

If you want a vaccine early, reach out to your healthcare provider about your options. If you don’t have a primary care physician check out the official website of your local health department for more information. 

The Better Business Bureau said con artists have already impersonated the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO) in phishing emails that claim to have more information about the disease. 

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Deborah Kendrick

Deborah is a weekday evening anchor and investigative reporter for ABC 17 News.


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