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Don’t fall for this scam offering to put vaccination status on your driver’s license

File photo (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber, file) (Markus Schreiber, Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved)

For those who have gotten the COVID-19 vaccine, it might be tempting to have your vaccination status at your fingertips in case you need to travel somewhere out of state that requires proof of vaccinations.

But scammers are ready to take advantage with a new fake text scam -- and this one is sneaky.

Attorney General Ashley Moody issued a warning Tuesday about the scam, which sends Floridians a text asking for driver license details in order to remake licenses that show vaccination status.

Fake text messages are trying to get your personal info. (Provided by Attorney General's Office)

But if you click the link in the text, it actually takes you to a spoofed Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles website with boxes for you to input your Social Security and driver’s license information, including a place to upload a photocopy of a driver’s license.

The link in the message will bring you to a spoofed Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles website. (Provided by Attorney General's Office)

The trick, Attorney General Ashley Moody said, is Florida isn’t even offering this service.

“Please be on the lookout for phony messages and remember that the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles will never reach out via text and ask for personal information,” Moody said. “Florida is not updating driver licenses to include proof of vaccination—any solicitation making this claim is a scam that should be reported immediately.”

DMV Director Terry L. Rhodes said the best defense against scams like this is to know how the department interacts with its customers.

“We do not text Floridians regarding the status of their driver’s license or request personal or medical information via text message. If you receive a text asking for this information, it is a scam. With only the information on your driver’s license, scammers can create many fraudulent financial accounts. All under your name, all without your knowledge,” Rhodes warned. “Do not respond to these texts and do not click on the links contained in the text message.”

Moody is asking Floridians to follow the tips below to avoid these types of imposter scams:

  • Know that the FLHSMV is not requiring driver license updates listing proof of vaccination
  • Do not automatically trust a number listed on a caller ID or in an unsolicited text message
  • Do not post photos of vaccination cards or driver licenses online, as they can be used to commit identity fraud
  • Avoid clicking on links in a suspicious email or in a text message received from an unknown sender

Report suspicious solicitations or COVID-19 vaccine-related advertisements to the Florida Attorney General’s Office by calling 1(866) 9NO-SCAM, or visiting MyFloridaLegal.com.

About the Author:

A Jacksonville native and proud University of North Florida alum, Francine Frazier has been with News4Jax since 2014 after spending nine years at The Florida Times-Union.