The COVID-19 vaccines are slowly rolling out all over India. And true to course, certain scams have already started up with people duping Indian citizens into giving over their personal information in order to get the vaccines.
The vaccination drive had started on January 16th, 2021, with the first people to get it being healthcare workers.
Frontline workers are supposed to be the next group of people getting the vaccine, these include defence personnel, police, civic officials, etc.
After these groups have been administered their vaccines, senior citizens who are above the age of 50 will be next in line to get vaccinated.
However, certain people are targetting this vulnerable group of senior citizens and trying to gain access to their personal information.
This recently came to light after news came out of how senior citizens of India were getting calls from people posing as officers from the ‘Drug Authority of India’.
What Is This COVID Vaccine Scam?
As of yet, the Centre has not revealed when, how and for how much the senior citizens will be getting their vaccine.
Fraudsters seem to be taking advantage of this lack of information and targetting Indian senior citizens.
Apparently, this is not new as fraudsters were found to be calling people in Madhya Pradesh even before the vaccination process began in India.
These scammers were asking people to pay Rs.500 in order to get registered for the COVID-19 vaccine.
Madhya Pradesh cyber cell, however, found out that this scam was going around and even traced the callers back to regions including Haryana, Hyderabad and Telangana.
In light of all this, the Centre and the health department has clarified that there are no third-party registrations being carried out.
On 22nd January, the Press Information Bureau (PIB) Fact Check Twitter account also posted this:
— PIB Fact Check (@PIBFactCheck) January 22, 2021
The PIB fact check handle specifically advised people against sharing private information like Aadhaar card details, OTP and more to any person pretending to be a government official.
According to sources, senior citizen data will be collected from electoral rolls and people themselves can self-register after the official Co-WIN application comes out.
While self-registering a person could have to submit documents like:
MGNERGA job card,
official IDs of MPs/ MLAs/ MLCs,
government-issued service ID card
health insurance smartcard issued by the Ministry of Labour
But the Centre did say that this is only while self-registering and that no one from the actual government or official authorities is calling up people and asking for such information.
We all certainly need to be more careful of what information we are giving out and to whom, since many people will want to use this time of crisis to their own advantage.
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