JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Have you gotten a suspicious email, phone call or text message offering you money to fill out a COVID-19 survey? If so, the Florida Attorney General’s Office has a consumer alert you’ll want to read.
Attorney General Ashley Moody is warning Floridians about a COVID-19 survey scam that’s making its rounds. Unlike legitimate surveys, the goal of this one is to fool you into sharing personal details that could be used to steal your identity or set up bogus credit cards or bank accounts in your name.
“As we approach nearly half of the population of Florida being fully vaccinated, scammers are finding new ways to exploit this milestone to steal sensitive information,” Moody warned. “Please be on the lookout for mysterious emails, text messages or phone calls claiming to be from Pfizer, Moderna, or Johnson & Johnson asking you to fill out a survey about your vaccine.”
According to Moody’s office, these scammers might impersonate your family members, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and vaccine providers. Their calls or messages may offer you money or prizes in exchange for completing a survey about your vaccine. In reality, Moody says, they want to gain access to your personal or financial details, so they can exploit that information to their advantage.
“Reports of these fake survey scams are beginning to surface in Florida, and vaccinated Floridians need to make sure they do not fall for this scam,” the attorney general said.
How to avoid getting duped
- Don’t automatically trust the number listed on your caller ID, especially with unexpected calls;
- Ignore calls, emails and messages asking for your personal information or requesting payment;
- Avoid clicking on links within emails or text messages offering you money to get vaccinated;
- Be skeptical about emails or text messages that contain misspellings or poor grammar.
If you believe you’ve received a survey scam, you can report your experience to the Florida Attorney General’s Office. Simply call 1-866-9NO-SCAM or visit the agency’s website — MyFloridaLegal.com.