Watch out for vaccine scams

Attorney General Kwame Raoul is urging residents throughout Illinois to be on alert for scams related to the distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine.

As the general public begins to receive doses of the vaccines manufactured by Pfizer and Moderna, Raoul’s office is cautioning people to be alert for scams and theft of personally-identifiable information.

“People should be wary of anyone who offers the vaccine or promises priority access to the vaccine or a COVID-19 cure in exchange for money,” Raoul said. “I am urging Illinois residents to be vigilant for scams related to the vaccine, which could compromise their health and personal information. People should report these scams to my office.”

“Currently, there is a limited amount of vaccine in Illinois and in the U.S.,” said Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike. “Because of the limited amount of vaccine, we want people to be aware of potential scammers who may ask you to pay out of pocket to get the vaccine, who offer to give you early access to the vaccine, or offer to ship you vaccine for payment. Until more vaccine is readily available, we ask people to be patient, understand there may be others in similar risk categories who may get vaccinated first, and continue to wear their mask, watch their distance, and avoid gatherings.”

For more on these scams, please see this week’s print edition.