Email scam vaccines

Booking your vaccine in SA? Then you’ll need to avoid this email SCAM

Criminals never miss an opportunity to exploit people, and South Africans awaiting their vaccine have been warned about this new ’email scam’.

Email scam vaccines

For those of you set to book your vaccine appointment, we’re afraid you’re going to have to maintain a certain level of vigilance online: A new ’email scam’ has been reported in SA, targeting people who are eligible to get their jabs.

What is the ‘vaccine email scam’?

That’s the warning sent out by personal finance site, JustMoney. They’ve had a raft of complaints about a dodgy digital communication, which aims to trick victims into sharing their most sensitive details. Here’s how it works:

  • – The scam is simple: Emails are sent to senior citizens, appearing as if they’re from the Health Department.
  • – The body of the email will confirm that their vaccination has been scheduled – without giving the date.
  • – Targets are then asked to click on a link to confirm the appointment.
  • – However, the link takes you to a site where your personal details can be captured.
  • – People who’ve already had their vaccine also received this email scam, prompting them to question its legitimacy.
  • – If you check the email address from the sender, it will become clear they are not actually part of the Health Department.

‘These fraudsters are highly convincing’

Shafeeka Anthony is JustMoney’s marketing manager. According to the expert, this behaviour is typical of fraudsters in South Africa, who have ‘no qualms’ in trying to scam those seeking a life-saving vaccine.

“Fraudsters are sophisticated in their methods and can be highly convincing. We have been notified of two cases where people received emails that appeared to be from the website, advising that their vaccination had been scheduled. They were asked to click on a link to confirm the appointment and provide personal information.”

“In the first case, the recipient had already received his first vaccination. He became suspicious, and, having checked the underlying email address, he realised it was not from the South African Department of Health. Fraudsters have no qualms about taking advantage of anyone who might be vulnerable and, sadly, older people are often targets.”