WASATCH FRONT NEWS: Salt Lake, Summit, Tooele, Utah, and Wasatch counties

‘It’s sad but not surprising’: Fighting fake COVID-19 vaccination cards

Wasatch Front

Courtesy: Utah Attorney General Office

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) – COVID-19 vaccine eligibility and distribution is opening up through the state of Utah. 

When an individual gets their dose of the COVID-19 vaccine they get a vaccination card displaying their vaccine information. Unfortunately, people are selling fake vaccination cards, and Utah’s Attorney General Sean D. Reyes says something needs to be done. 

Attorney General Reyes has called on Twitter, eBay, and Shopify to act immediately to prevent people from selling fake CDC vaccination cards on their platforms. 

A Facebook post from Utah Attorney General Office stated “Fraudulent COVID Vaccination cards are being sold in various places online.”

“Because of this, Sean Reyes, Utah’s Attorney General is taking a stand and fighting for Utahns by calling on the CEOs of these platforms – Twitter, eBay, & Shopify – to stop the harmful sale of these fake cards.

“This was a bipartisan effort by the National Association of Attorneys General to protect “the safety and well-being of the residents of our states.” It included the attorneys general from various other U.S. states and territories.”

In a letter to the companies’ CEOs, a bipartisan coalition of attorneys general raises concerns about the public health risks of this fraud, according to information shared on his website. 

“It’s sad but not surprising that fraudsters continue to take advantage of people during the Pandemic, but we’re fighting back to protect Utahns,” Attorney General Reyes shares. 

“Some of these fraudsters we can investigate but many use tactics that evade prosecution. So, we’re asking social media platforms to help us crack down on ads and promotions designed to exploit vulnerable citizens.”

Attorney General Reyes says legitimate vaccination cards are given by providers when they administer the vaccine. Those who buy fake cards can have their own information added to the card or add it in themselves, so it appears they have been vaccinated when they have not. 

“These deceptive cards threaten the health of our communities, slow progress in getting people protected from the virus, and violate many state laws,” as shared on Attorney General Reyes’s website. 

Charla Haley, Public Information Officer for the Utah Department of Health tells ABC4 “vaccination record cards are given to those who get vaccinated so they know what type of vaccine they received and, in the case of Pfizer and Moderna, help them know when they may be able to receive their second vaccine.” 

“People buying fake cards threaten community health and slow the progress in getting Utahns protected from the virus,” Haley adds. 

In their letter, the attorneys general ask the CEOs to do the following:

  • Monitor their platforms for ads or links selling blank or fraudulently completed vaccination cards.
  • Promptly take down ads or links that are selling cards.
  • Preserve records and information about the ads and the people who were selling them.

According to his website, Attorney General Reyes is joined in sending this letter by the Attorneys General of North Carolina, Tennessee, Alaska, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Georgia, Guam, Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New York, North Dakota, Northern Mariana Islands, Ohio, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Virgin Islands, Virginia, Washington, and Wisconsin.

Those who obtain a legitimate COVID-19 vaccination card have the opportunity to get them laminated. 

As thousands of Americans get the COVID-19 vaccine, some retailers are prepared to laminate your COVID-19 vaccination card for free.

Office Depot and OfficeMax stores nationwide will laminate your completed vaccination card starting now through July 25, 2021. To get your card laminated, you must present not only your completed, authentic card but this coupon in-store.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

ABC4 PODCASTS

More Podcasts