Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody issues consumer alert on COVID-19 vaccine investigation scam

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) – Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody issued a consumer alert on Thursday warning Florida residents of an emerging COVID-19 vaccine investigation scam.

Earlier this year, the Better Business Bureau warned crooks contacting citizens via email, text or phone call offering compensation in return for carrying out an investigation into the COVID-19 vaccine.

According to the alert, these are not genuine investigations and residents may be tricked into sharing personal information. Once a victim’s information is stolen through the fake survey, crooks can use it to gain access to bank accounts, set up credit cards, or steal identities.

The scam would involve messages from con artists masquerading as relatives, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, vaccine suppliers or other sources, according to the alert. The content of the messages may offer cash rewards or prizes for completing the fake survey after receiving a COVID-19 vaccine, as reported by the Ministry of Justice.

Moody has posted the following tips to help avoid COVID-19 vaccine scams:

  • Do not automatically trust the number on the caller ID, especially unsolicited calls;
  • Hang up or ignore someone who is asking for personal information or requesting payment;
  • Avoid clicking on links in emails or text messages offering compensation for COVID-19 vaccinations; and
  • Be especially wary of communications with spelling mistakes or poor grammar.

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