FBI sees rise in COVID-19 vaccine related scams

The FBI has a warning for everyone, but especially seniors, who are now eligible to get the coronavirus vaccine.

Scammers have shifted their fraud schemes toward the COVID-19 vaccines, most recently through claims they can make it possible for people to purchase a COVID-19 vaccine online.

Drugmakers say consumers should be aware that legitimate vaccines will be administered at no cost and no legitimate vaccine is sold online.

Some of the fraudulent activities the FBI says people should be aware of include:

- Advertisements or offers for early access to a vaccine upon payment of a deposit or fee

- Requests you to pay to either obtain the vaccine or be placed on a COVID-19 vaccine waiting list

- Offers to sell and/or ship doses of a vaccine, domestically or internationally, directly to the consumer

- Unsolicited emails or phone calls from someone claiming to be from COVID-19 vaccine center

To avoid falling victim of a vaccine scam, the FBI recommends consulting your primary care physician before undergoing any vaccination and check Florida’s Health Department’s coronavirus resources website for up-to-date information about authorized vaccine distribution channels.

For the complete FBI warnings on coronavirus-related scams, click here.

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