BBB warns not to post COVID vaccine card online, post sticker instead


AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF) – Newly vaccinated people tend to rush to social media to share their news and post their vaccination card. But Better Business Bureau warns this is a dangerous move.

Director of Business Services for the CSRA BBB, Hunter Jones, told us “It’s really dangerous to put your information out there, specifically this card because it gives out your full name, your date of birth and possibly where you got the vaccination from.”

Jones works for the CSRA BBB and he said this warning comes to help stop people before scammers get a hold of valuable information.

“You can get access to someone’s passwords,” he explained. “People put their birthdays in their passwords. Potentially could lead down the road to maybe taking out information in your name such as a credit card or a loan. When you have someone’s birth date and full name, it’s almost just as dangerous as having someone’s full social security number.”

The BBB tracks scammers in the CSRA each month. According to the BBB Scamtracker shared by Jones, in January, there were nine scams reported with more than $8,000 lost. Last year, there were 107 scams reported with more than $28,000 lost in the CSRA. We spoke with the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office about how it would investigate theft of private information for illegal use online.

“That is actually identity theft by Georgia statue. And that is an automatic felony.”

Investigator William Bonsack said the sheriff’s office successfully locks up more than 50 percent of people who commit theses types of crimes. And he warns people about oversharing.

“Realize that not everyone is your friend,” adding that people also should not make purchases online through places such as Facebook Marketplace, but meet in person at a law enforcement building.

Additionally, the BBB reports the most popular scam during the pandemic is online shopping. Inv. Bonsack said when purchasing through PayPal, never exchange money through the family and friends feature because it makes catching the person harder.

Finally, the BBB suggest people post their vaccination sticker instead of the card or update a profile photo with a vaccinated frame.

THE B-B-B also says posting your vaccine card online makes it easier for scammers to create imitation cards that are sold in the future.

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