Viewpoint: Things To Watch For In COVID-19 Vaccine Scams
Tue, 03/09/2021 - 10:56am caleb
Office of Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel
As people across the country continue to seek vaccinations for COVID-19, Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel is reinforcing several helpful tips offered by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to help residents watch for scams.
“These are unprecedented times, and as health care professionals and authorities work through the best ways to provide COVID vaccines to people who need them, there may be some confusion or misinformation circulating about exactly what to expect,” Nessel said. “Scammers will try to capitalize on these circumstances and take advantage of people by using a variety of tactics. We must all remain watchful and aware of their tricks, and I encourage people to follow these simple tips to make sure they don’t fall victim to a scam.”
While the Michigan Department of Attorney General has only received a handful of COVID-19 scam complaints, the office wants Michiganders to remain alert of attempts by bad actors to steal their money or personal information.
In a public message earlier this week, the FTC listed several tips to help people watch for such scams:
• Don’t pay to sign up for the COVID vaccine. Anyone who asks for a payment to put you on a list, make an appointment for you, or reserve a spot in line is a scammer.
• You can’t pay to get early access to the vaccine. That’s a scam.
• On Medicare? You don’t have to pay to get the COVID-19 vaccine. Only scammers will ask you to pay.
• Ignore sales ads for the vaccine. You can’t buy it – anywhere. It’s only available at federal- and state-approved locations.
• Nobody legit will call, text, or email about the vaccine to ask for your Social Security, bank account, or credit card number. That’s a scam.
Throughout National Consumer Protection Week and the entire month of March, consumers can follow along on the Department’s Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram pages for daily consumer protection information.
Your connection to consumer protection is just a click or phone call away. Consumer complaints can be filed online at the Attorney General’s website, or by calling 877-765-8388.