Nowadays, you may notice an increase of text message ads and alerts to your phone. That’s why, for many people, getting a text message about registering for the vaccine probably wouldn’t alarm them.
However, the pandemic has brought about a new scam: COVID-19 vaccine-related phone calls and text messages, which may send you to an extremely convincing site and, ultimately, request your bank information to register for your vaccination.
This can be harmful in many ways. Not only will you potentially be exposing your bank information, but the advertisement and unsolicited information could contain false information about the vaccine.
FBI Financial Crimes Section Chief Steven Merrill told USA Today, “We want to make sure that the public understands that the information they should be getting about the vaccine should not be coming from an advertisement or unsolicited information; it should be coming from an official government website.”
Since the start of the pandemic, federal law enforcement agencies have received thousands of fraud complaints related to COVID-19. Over 100 cases have been prosecuted, and authorities expect the number to continue to rise as vaccines are distributed.
Each state government should have their own webpage about the status of the COVID-19 vaccine distribution. Make sure you reference official government websites only.