Scammers use fake vaccine waiting lists to target victims

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- The race to get the COVID-19 vaccine is giving rise to a whole new crop of scams.

Federal officials say as we wait our turn for the vaccine, scam artists are trying to take advantage of those looking to get the shot as soon as possible.

The important thing to remember is there is a distribution plan the state of Texas is rolling out in order to get the vaccine to the most needy.

Officials with the Federal Trade Commission say they are seeing a host of scams looking to prey on those who either do not know about the roll-out plan or wish to get the vaccine sooner.

One scam they are already dealing with has to do with waiting lists.

Scammers are charging people money to be put on a waiting list to get the vaccine. Officials say the distribution plan does not come with a waiting list and certainly does not include one that you have to pay to join.

"You cannot pay to expedite your place in line, so to speak," said Colleen Tressler with the Federal Trade Commission. "We are concerned that people are going to be taking advantage of. (They are) trying to ask people for money to either put them in place in a line, get them on a list and expedite their visits for the vaccine,"

The same warning goes for supposed cures or treatments for the virus. If you see them advertised, the FTC says they are not authorized and likely will not work.

Check the state's current distribution guidelines before taking any action,

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