Our #covidscams bookmark educates patients about five kinds of online crime that have spiked since the pandemic. Download a copy for yourself.

COVID-19 Opens Up New Scam Opportunities for Criminals: Learn About Them Here

COVID-19 Vaccines Are Coming. Be Smart About Where You Get Yours

  • Initial COVID vaccines won’t come from Amazon, AliBaba, or non-US pharmacies. The first vaccines have temperature control requirements and can't just be mailed to you. You can only get them through a licensed U.S. healthcare provider such as a brick and mortar pharmacy or hospital.
  • Scammers have already been caught selling fake COVID treatments and fake COVID vaccines and cannot wait to scam you for money for the real vaccines when they come out.
  • If you have any questions about how to get an authentic vaccine or questions about vaccines themselves, please consult the CDC's COVID-19 vaccine information page: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/about-vaccines.html
  • Healthcare professionals: Do not purchase COVID-19 vaccines from entities who do not possess pharmaceutical wholesale licenses from your state’s Board of Pharmacy. You can check licensing with your state board of pharmacy or through the FDA: https://www.fda.gov/drugs/drug-supply-chain-integrity/verify-wholesale-drug-distributor-licenses

As Legitscript points out in its new report, The COVID-19 Crisis: An Outbreak of Cybercrime Related to the Pandemic, "crisis breeds opportunists"—and it's certainly true that opportunists have stepped up to take advantage of COVID-19. The report, which was released in April 2020, outlines ways in which drug counterfeiters and other criminals have emerged to exploit fear and illness all over the world for their own profit.


PSM has been tracking the explosion of crime that has sprung up around COVID-19 treatments and products (or the promise of treatments and products) since mid-March, when public reports of fake treatments, counterfeit protective equipment, and price gouging began emerging around the U.S.  We are broadly sorting news about these crimes into five categories which you can consult below: counterfeit medical equipment, black market drug sales, fake therapies, price gouging, and financial scams.


Know of a COVID-19 related incident which should appear here? Send us a tip at editors@safemedicines.org.

Adopt our Covid Safety campaign!

Post our one pager to your website and to social media. Use the hashtag #covidscams to help raise awareness of criminals using the crisis to prey on people. Drop us a note at editors@safemedicines.org to let us know you're helping!

Read our COVID-19 safety
tips in English and Spanish to
learn more.