The Better Business Bureau of Acadiana is warning of scams involving the COVID-19 Vaccine. Government officials in Canada and the United States have just begun the rollout of the long-awaited vaccine. Officials are already seeing con artists taking advantage of people who want the vaccination. Be careful of fake COVID cures.

According to a report from the BBB, products are popping online that promise to cure COVID-19. There are even some companies trying to sell fake vaccines. The US Government is currently trying to stop these companies. Remember you cannot order the vaccine online.

Scammers are also pretending to be officials from the Center for Disease Control and the World Health Organization. Victims are receiving emails are designed to look as if it is providing information about COVID-19. But actually, these emails are just another way con artists are attempting to get your personal information in order to hack into your accounts. The BBB is also reporting that there has been increasing in robocalls that are impersonating government workers.

You can protect yourself! Be careful. Check out this advice from the Better Business Bureau of Acadiana:

  • Research carefully: Scammers are clever. If something sounds too good to be true, it probably is a scam. Be wary. Don’t trust everything. Double-check any vaccine-related information with official news sources. The vaccine is not available to be purchased online or in stores.
  • Check with your doctor:  If are interested in the vaccine, contact your healthcare provider about your options. You can also visit the official website of your local health department for more information
  • Ignore calls for immediate action. If someone is pressuring you to act now and submit your information, it is most likely a scam. While you may want to be first in line for the vaccine, don’t let that sense of urgency cloud your judgment. Scammers try to get you to act before you think. Don’t fall for it.
  • Double-check the URL. Con-artists will purchase official-looking URLs to use in their tricks. Be careful that the link is really what it pretends to be. If the message alleges to come from the local government, make sure the URL ends in .gov (for the United States) or .ca (for Canada). When in doubt, perform a separate internet search for the website.

For More Information

Read more about coronavirus scams on the Federal Trade Commission’s website. Learn more about the disease at the CDC’s FAQ page. Also, the FDA is updating this page about its progress in developing a treatment for coronavirus.

BBB has identified many ways in which scammers are cashing in the COVID-19 pandemic. Learn more about clinical trial scamscontract tracing conscounterfeit face masks, and government agency imposters.

If you’ve spotted a scam (whether or not you’ve lost money), report it to BBB Scam Tracker. Your report can help others avoid falling victim to scams. Sign up for BBB Scam Alerts to receive weekly notices of emerging scams to avoid.

“Look for the Seal” and Start with Trust®. BBB Serving Acadiana is a private non-profit organization. BBB strives for a trustworthy marketplace by maintaining standards for truthful advertising, investigating and exposing fraud against consumers and businesses.

BBB Serving Acadiana services the parishes of Acadia, Evangeline, Iberia, Lafayette, St. Martin, St. Landry and Vermilion.