Since the COVID vaccines have come out, so have COVID vaccine survey scams. The Department of Justice recently reported that people across the country are receiving emails and/or texts that offer a “free” prize for filling out a COVID vaccine survey. They are told they’ll receive a free gift, such as an iPad, for compensation for completing the survey. All they have to do is pay the shipping and handling fees for the gift. Yet, all this is a phishing scam designed to gather people’s personal information, such as their credit card, Social Security or bank account numbers, and people never receive the promised prize.
To protect yourself, remember these tips if you come across a survey:
- Never click on a link of an unsolicited email or text.
- Legitimate surveys won’t offer money, gifts or any incentive to take them.
- Legitimate surveys won’t have urgency such as, “You must take this survey in the next hour or it will expire.”
- Legitimate companies won’t ask for your username, password or Social Security number.
- Check links by hovering over them. If they seem long and suspicious, don’t click on them.
- Check logos, language and phone numbers. If anything seems “doctored” or doesn’t match what you see on a legitimate vaccine provider site, don’t click on any of the links.
If you think you are a victim of a COVID vaccine survey scam, please report it to the National Center for Disaster Fraud Hotline for 866-720-5721.
Also, see the video skit by our partners at the Stop Senior Scams Acting Program (SSSAP) about the COVID vaccine survey scam.
And, if you come across any Medicare fraud, report it to our California Senior Medicare Patrol (SMP) at 1-855-613-7080. You can also learn about current common Medicare scams by visiting our Fraud Alerts page.