As COVID-19 vaccines start to ship, the scams associated with vaccines are rapidly increasing. The Michigan Attorney General and MDHHS have released some information on how to detect and avoid scams associated with the COVID-19 vaccines. As you may have heard, vaccinations are going to be prioritized for essential healthcare and frontline workers first. Many people will want to get vaccinated as soon as possible, which will make it easier for scammers to try and influence you into taking action – here’s what you can do to avoid scams:
Do not respond or click any links in emails that:
- Offer to give you priority access to a vaccine
- Ask you to allow you to sign up to receive a vaccine or reserve your place in line
- Offer enrollment in any studies, paid or unpaid, regarding research for COVID-19 vaccines
- Give you the chance to pay for a vaccine
At the current time, priority COVID-19 vaccines will be distributed and allocated via employers of frontline workers. Your employer will communicate with you via their usual means of communication on how to receive your vaccine. If you are a priority/frontline worker and expect to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, please carefully examine any emails you receive regarding your access to the vaccine. Be especially cautious of any email that asks you to reply with personal info, or any website that asks you for personal info or usernames/passwords. You should not be asked to submit any financial or payment info under any circumstances.
If you receive any email, text message, or phone call communication regarding COVID-19 vaccinations, you are encouraged to verify this information with the appropriate people within your company. As the priority vaccinations will be done in coordination with employers of frontline workers, your employer should be equipped to assist you with navigating the process to get your vaccine.
If you company employs workers that fall under the Phase 1A, 1B, or 1C groups, make a COVID-19 communication plan, and communicate that plan with your employees. Tell them how you will communicate future vaccine information with them, and who will be responsible for this communication. Ensure they understand who to go to with questions. You may also want to explain to them how to determine what employees will be classified under the Phase 1 vaccine plan.
Worksighted is also prepared to assist your employees in detecting suspicious emails. Please ensure your users know how to contact Worksighted support. Support can be obtained via email at firstname.lastname@example.org (forward suspicious emails), or via phone at 616-546-2961 x1 (for urgent issues). Please remind your users to not forward any emails containing protected health information (this would include health information for your users or patients). If a user is unsure if an email contains protected health information, they can simply email email@example.com, explain that they have a concerning email, but that it may contain protected information, and we can assist them properly.