Ever since Covid started sanitizers and masks were always at the top of news including the artificial production of sanitizers, which has now graduated to fake vaccines and phishing scams related to vaccination bookings. More than 50 Core have received one or two doses of the COVID-19 vaccine since they were approved. At the same time, millions of others have been frustrated with the challenges they may face getting an appointment to receive the vaccine. Adding to that frustration is the confusion caused by varying vaccine sign-ups, or notification methods among cities and villages.
As a result urgency to get vaccinated creates the perfect environment for COVID-19 vaccine scammers. Fraudsters are trying to trick consumers with offers for fake vaccines, fees for bogus services, and information grabs for identity theft. Where they are using saline water and injecting it on the name of vaccine.
Ziqitza Rajasthan helps by listing few steps you to ensure you don’t become their next victim and protect yourself from COVID-19 vaccine scams.
- ZHL Rajasthan says users need to be aware that the CoWIN platform and the AarogyaSetu app are the only two platforms that allow Indian adults to register for the Covid 19 vaccine right now.Note that there are some third-party tools and web pages that may actually help users track vaccination slot availability in their areas. However, registration is strictly limited to CoWIN and the AarogyaSetu app. Refrain from getting vaccinated at a centre that does not register them on the Cowin vaccine portal.Any third party message, SMS, or eMail claiming to help with the registration process for the vaccine could be potentially dangerous. Don’t click on the links on such messages and to not share and further spread such malicious messages to more people.
- Websites apart there are and continue to be a number of fake mobile applications that are in place to scam people. These apps generally end in an identification name ‘.apk’. Vaccine seekers are advised to only download authentic apps from the official app stores such as the Google Play Store or the Apple Store. Even then it is advisable to only go for the official Co-WIN app.
- All the websites and apps aside, there have been countless other portals and platforms popping up that are being flagged by government officials. These scams can even take the form of cold calls and social media outreach. Don’t fall for it.
- Residential societies or corporate companies should directly sign an agreement with the private hospital for setting up a Covid-19 vaccine camp on their premises recommends Ziqitza Limited. This way, fraudsters can’t exploit on the name of the private hospital
- Check if the camps are endorsed by the civic or local health authorities, if not such camps should not be allowed to set up their vaccination centres on the premises of the society.
- Vaccinated beneficiaries should ask vaccinators at the camp to share vaccination certificate immediately after getting jabbed. It’s suspicious if vaccinator procrastinate issuing their vaccination certificate and promise to provide the certificate in a couple of days.
- Majority of people exhibit vaccine related symptoms which include fever, fatigue and body ache. Beneficiaries must notice their body behavior after they have been jabbed and also ask other beneficiaries who were vaccinated at the centre for the same. If none of the beneficiaries report post-vaccination symptoms, vaccinators must contact the local health authorities and check the credentials of the private vaccination camps.
Dr Santosh Datar, Ziqitza Healthcare elaborates on the process to follow to get yourself registered through Co-WIN which would help you to avoid these scams, one can register online through the official Co-WIN portal or any partner accompanying app. After registration, you can view and book from an available list of COVID Vaccination Centres as well as the date and time. An OTP will be generated prior to the registration and a confirmation token or slip will be generated. After this, a confirmation SMS will be sent. After the vaccination is done, patients will receive a message updating them about their next shot and a confirmation that the first shot was done. At present Co-WIN is the safest and most reliable application to make the vaccination bookings through.
Further adding to this Ziqitza says people can also book a vaccination slot through Paytm’s platform. Users only need to look for the Vaccine Finder tool on the app which is under the Featured section. Through this, people can search for vaccination centers based on their PIN codes or districts and based on their respective ages. After pressing the ‘book now’ button users are taken to the Co-WIN portal to complete verification and booking.