Facebook, Instagram and Telegram are go-to sites for finding illegal vaccine cards, Digital Citizens Alliance and CSW Investigation Finds


WASHINGTON, 21 October 2021 / PRNewswire / – Malicious actors are using Facebook, Instagram and Telegram to sell illegal COVID-19 vaccination cards, a joint investigation by the Digital Citizens Alliance (Digital Citizens) and the Coalition for a Safer Web ( CSW). The organizations discovered hundreds of messages from sellers offering illicit cards, many of which contained lot and store numbers which sellers said have a better chance of deceiving authorities.

Most disturbing is that the illicit vaccination cards remained on Facebook, Instagram owned by Facebook and Telegram a week after companies were alerted to their existence.

“Too often, platforms rely on the public to alert them when illegal or dangerous activity appears on their sites. But now, even when they were alerted, they have not taken action to remove it,” said Tom galvin, the executive director of the Digital Citizens Alliance. “Selling these cards is a crime. Buying these cards is a crime. If these platforms are to be trusted, it will take more than a name change. It requires responsible behavior.”

Internet security organizations posted images of two Facebook accounts, four Instagram accounts and six Telegram accounts in the report exposing the sales. From 20 october, all of these pages and dozens of other publications not shared in the research remain accessible.

“The American people are facing a pandemic made worse by American and foreign criminals preying on the public through social media platforms to sell counterfeit vaccination cards and hack drugstore websites to register these fake cards,” said the president of the CSW. Marc Ginsberg. “Our report reveals corporate crime and the failure of Facebook, YouTube and other platforms to protect the safety of Americans.”

“This is the fourth report our organizations have made since March 2020, on platforms during the COVID crisis – and we have shown fake vaccines for sale as well as advertisements for questionable quality masks for sale. that it stops? ” asked CSW Eric Feinberg, the principal investigator of this research. “The disinformation is horrible and needs to stop, but someone should ask the platforms how much money they have made from the illegal and / or illicit trade related to COVID-19? If they won a dollar, his a dollar too much.”

Digital Citizens and CSW will share links to publications found online upon request. Additionally, Digital Citizens is sending letters to federal regulators, pharmacies and stores that have apparently fallen victim to bad actors sharing lot and store numbers in online posts.

About the Digital Citizens Alliance

The Digital Citizens Alliance is a 501 (c) (6) nonprofit that is a consumer-driven coalition focused on educating the public and policymakers about the threats consumers face on the Internet. Digital Citizens wants to create a dialogue on the importance for Internet stakeholders (individuals, government and industry) to make the Web a safer place. Based in Washington, DC, the Digital Citizens Alliance counts among its supporters: private citizens, the healthcare, pharmaceutical and creative industries as well as experts in online safety and other communities focused on Internet safety. Visit us at alliancecitoyennesnumériques.org

About the Safer Web Coalition

The Safer Web Coalition, a non-profit anti-cyberterrorism and extremism organization whose mission is to prevent social media platforms from serving as a conduit for extremists and terrorists to plot, incite and execute domestic and foreign acts of violence. CSW currently advises Congress, the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of Defense, and the National Security Council on incitement to extremism and social media-based operational planning, as well as on private industry and advocacy organizations. Civil society. Visit us at coalitionsw.org.

for more information, contact Adam benson To [email protected] or 202.999.9104.

SOURCE Digital Citizens Alliance

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