Watch Out for COVID-19 Vaccine Scams
In the devastating wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been renewed hope as the vaccines begin roll out nationwide. However, as distribution begins, it seems there is more to be concerned about than just staying healthy from the virus. According to authorities, we also need to be acutely aware of avoiding vaccine-related scams.
According to the San Francisco Police Department (SFPD), “COVID-19 scams can come in the form of robocalls, emails or online sellers offering cures, tests or vaccinations. The people behind these offers may claim to be with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and may claim to have special information or products available.”
When it comes to avoiding these types of scams, the first order of the day is to keep in mind that Medicare covers the COVID-19 vaccine, so there will be NO COST to everyday folks. This means that if someone asks you to share your Medicare number or to pay to access the vaccine, you can bank on it being a scam.
Here is some other important info to keep in mind to avoid vaccine-related scams:
It isn’t possible to put your name on a list to get the vaccine.
You can’t pay to get early access to a vaccine.
Don’t share your personal or financial info if someone calls, texts or emails you promising access to the vaccine for a fee.
“If you receive a robocall, hang up. Don’t press any numbers or answer any questions. Beware of text messages and emails offering cures, information or financial assistance related to COVID-19. Carefully research requests for donations. Don’t send cash, gift cards, or wire money,” cautions the SFPD.
And always remember the SFPD’s mantra: If you see something, say something. If you spot an online or email scam, you can report it to the Federal Trade Commission or call 1-800-MEDICARE. Click here to stay updated on the latest COVID-19 vaccine info in San Francisco and also visit CDC.gov or for info you can trust.