As part of the global response to the Covid-19 pandemic, many countries are requiring that you show proof of vaccination (called vaccine cards or vaccine passports) to travel or do certain activities.
Once you get your vaccine, the provider gives you a card that you can show as proof of vaccination. Any subsequent boosters get added to the card to show you’re up to date with all the latest requirements and recommendations. Only legitimate vaccine providers are able to provide valid Covid-19 vaccination cards upon receiving your vaccine.
Unfortunately, since there is a market for fake vaccine cards, scammers are out there creating fraudulent vaccine cards in various ways. They are then selling them to those who are unwilling to get vaccinated but want all the freedoms that come along with having a Covid-19 vaccine. Creating, selling, buying, or using a fax vaccination card is illegal, and anyone caught doing this will be punished — but this doesn’t stop people from doing it.
As part of their Covid vaccine scams, the fraudsters sometimes steal your identity in order to be able to sell your vaccine card details. If this happens, they may also go even further and steal money from your bank accounts and credit cards.
Examples of Covid Vaccine Card Fraud
Using Someone Else’s Covid Card Details From Social Media
One of the most common ways scammers create fake vaccine cards to sell is by stealing information off of social media.
Getting your vaccine is an exciting moment, and you may be tempted to show your support for the vaccine by posting a picture of your vaccine card on Instagram or Facebook. However, these cards often contain sensitive information that scammers can use to commit identity theft.
Many vaccine passports have your full name, your date of birth, and information about what vaccine you got and where you were vaccinated. This is all information that scammers can use to steal your identity and use it to create fake vaccine cards or even steal money from you.
For example, experienced fraudsters have ways of using your name and birth date to find out your social security number, which they can then use to open credit cards or other accounts in your name, ultimately leaving you with a pile of debt.
Another way scammers might steal from you using the information on your vaccine card is by contacting you and pretending to be someone who works for the place you got vaccinated. They can gain your trust by confirming details from your cards, such as the type of vaccine you got and the date you received it, and proceed to ask you for a deposit for your next dose or booster.
In short, as harmless as it may seem to show off your vaccine passport on social media, it can have serious consequences if the information it contains falls into the wrong hands.
Forged Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Vaccine Cards Being Sold For Money
Fraudsters are also commonly forging official vaccine cards from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and selling them through social media or other online outlets. Ironically, they are often scamming people who try to buy the cards as well by asking for advance payments and never sending them the cards or by requesting sensitive info that they can then use to commit identity fraud.
Fraudsters Selling Blank CDC Covid-19 Vaccine Cards
Another way scammers are taking advantage of the demand for Covid-19 vaccination passports is by getting their hands on packs of blank vaccine cards and selling them. The buyers can then fill them in with whatever information they want.
Fraudsters may even try to trick someone who really does want a vaccine into paying for a blank vaccine card. They could do this by saying you need to buy one to take it with you to your first vaccination appointment or as a backup in case you lose your original one or something else along those lines.
Or, scammers might claim to be official providers of backup vaccine cards that you can fill out and use to go to events and such, in order to keep your original safe and in good shape. The facts of the matter are that your vaccine card is the only official one you will ever be given unless you request a new one from the providers of your vaccine.
How To Avoid Covid Vaccine Card Fraud and Scams
Never Post Your Vaccine Card on Social Media Without Hiding the Important Details
If you’re going to upload a picture of your vaccine passport to social media channels, make sure to edit it first by blurring or blacking out the sensitive information on it. Cover up things like your last name, your date of birth, and details about your vaccination. In other words, don’t show anything on the card that had to be filled in to personalize it for you. A picture of your smiling face holding up your vaccine passport with all the details hidden is all anybody needs to see!
Covid Vaccine Cards Are Free, so You Should Never Have To Pay for One
There’s no reason you should ever have to pay for a blank vaccine card or a duplicate or replacement vaccine passport, so don’t believe anyone who tells you otherwise. If you’re going for your first vaccination, the administrators will give you a card free of charge. If you happen to lose your card, you should be able to contact the organization that gave it to you in the first place for a replacement.
Never Try To Buy a Card and Input Your Own Details
All the official information on your Covid-19 vaccination proof must be entered by a professional authorized to do so. You might think you can just get a blank card and enter the details of your vaccine if you lost your original, but this would be illegal and could get you in serious trouble.
If You Are Approached by a Covid Vaccine Card Scammer, Report Them To the FBI
If anyone ever tries to approach you and sell you a fake vaccine passport, a blank vaccine card, or anything else like that, say no and report the scammers to the FBI. This helps stop such fraudulent activities to protect yourself and others from them in the future.
If You Are Scammed by Vaccine Card Fraud, Approach a Chargeback Company To Help Get Your Money Back
Were your vaccine passport details stolen off your social media and used to commit identity theft and steal from you? If so, a chargeback company may be able to help you recover some or all of your funds.
Chargeback companies consist of financial professionals and fund recovery specialists who know the ins and outs of all the different scams out there, including those related to Covid vaccine cards.
These fund recovery companies can track down the scammers and pressure them into returning your money, or getting your money back through other means, including credit card chargebacks. If you suspect you’ve fallen victim to a Covid vaccine scam, don’t hesitate to reach out to a chargeback company today for a consultation about your case.