Just when the COVID-19 vaccine has already begun to be applied in various places on the planet and it is expected that the same thing will happen soon in the United States and Latin American countries, Interpol launched a global alert, with an orange circle, warning to be with the eyes very open to possible fraud and theft attempts.
The international police body launched its message to 194 countries, where it explained that criminal organizations can take advantage of the desire and anxiety around the vaccine to profit, offering fake drugs and even charging high sums of money for compounds that are not real.
The alert came directly from the Interpol office in Lyon, France, the headquarters of that agency, as revealed by the agency’s own communications department on its website.
Interpol warns in its letter that there is “potential criminal activity” with falsification of the vaccine and even theft and false messages to deceive the population and take advantage of it, for which it urged the authorities of each country to take extreme measures.
“As governments prepare to distribute vaccines, criminal organizations are planning to infiltrate or disrupt supply chains,” said Jürgen Stock, Interpol’s secretary-general, mentioning that social networks and websites could be used for possible scams.
The official made it clear that the risk is not only economic but also health and life-threatening, of someone arriving to inject something other than the vaccine.
“It is essential that the authorities are as prepared as possible for what will be an avalanche of all kinds of criminal activity related to the covid-19 vaccine,” Stock added.
“In addition to the danger that online ordering of potentially deadly products can pose, an analysis by INTERPOL’s Cybercrime Unit revealed that of 3,000 websites studied associated with online pharmacies suspected of selling illegal drugs and medical devices, nearly 1,700 contained cyber threats, especially phishing and spamming malware, “added the Interpol page.
“To avoid falling victim to online scams, often disguised under offers that are too interesting to be true, it is important to be vigilant, distrust and be careful,” they warned. “Users are recommended to always consult the information provided by the health agencies of their respective countries or by the World Health Organization to keep up to date with the latest health recommendations related to COVID-19.”