Of course people are excited to finally receive their long-awaited coronavirus vaccination -- but experts are warning against posting your vaccine card on social media.
“I’ve seen Facebook friends that are under the age of 50 that are already receiving the vaccine and are posting their card because people are excited,” said Lauren Blankenship with the Better Business Bureau of Eastern Michigan.
Michigan COVID-19 vaccinations: How to find appointments, info on phases
Blankenship says the vaccine cards issued by the CDC hold a lot of information, including your full name, birthday, type of vaccine received and the exact location where the shot was administered.
“Those things may not seem problematic, but whenever you put them in the hands of a scammer ... (they) can access all kinds of information just by having that information,” Blankenship said.
Sure, some of that personal information on your vaccine card may already be visible online, but you don’t want to make it more convenient for scammers who may be watching on the other side of the screen, connecting the dots.
“If you’re just laying it out there for them, then it’s easy and simple searches. Your name, your birth date, any additional information might allow them to get into any of your personal accounts. They can search your name, they can find out more identifying information about you and that can compromise your personal information,” Blankenship said.
Officials also say there is a fear that posting these images can give an advantage to scammers who are making counterfeit vaccine cards.
“There’s enough of them out there already that these scammers already have the information, unfortunately. They can then input other people’s personal information; they can put anyone’s name into that card, and it has the date on there,” Blankenship said. “By having a blank card, a scammer can then input their own personal information that then makes it look as though they’ve received the vaccine.”
For anyone who feels compelled to post a photo, it’s best to take a picture of the sticker or your bandage. If you believe your information has been stolen, you can submit a report with the FBI’s Internet Crime Complain Center online here.