Digital Exclusive: Dangers of posting COVID-19 vaccination cards on social media

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SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KCAU) – People are excited about getting the COVID-19 vaccine and sharing their vaccination cards on social media.

But the Better Business Bureau said showing the vaccination card with your self-identifying information makes you vulnerable to identity theft.

“Because it encourages people to go out there and look into your background a little bit more and maybe figure out things like where you live, where you bank, and maybe further get into like social security number and different things like that,” said Ofc. Andrew Dutler, Crime Prevention Officer.

Officer Andrew Dutler with the Sioux City Police Department said people shouldn’t share any extra personal information on social media at any time.

The COVID-19 vaccination cards have your full name, birthday, and information about where you got the vaccine, which can help scammers create phony versions to sell online.

“If you have a vaccination card that has your vaccine information on that, keep that to yourself and then you shouldn’t have to worry a whole lot about someone taking that from you, going to use that someway, somehow into the future,” said Tyler Brock, Siouxland District Health.

Tyler Brock, Deputy Director at the Siouxland District Health Department, said they haven’t received a lot of calls about the COVID-19 vaccination cards scam.

He mentions nobody can protect your identity more than you and be cautious about putting the vaccination cards on any social media platform.

“We can ask for ID when people come in for their second dose, and we have certainly have looked at that. We have not asked for an ID prior to this. We do need to verify age, and we are going to need to verify that people meet the qualifications of being able to receive the vaccine right now,” said Brock.

Deputy Director Brock said the health department doesn’t want to produce a lot of stumbling blocks for folks getting the vaccine and might ask for ID if this becomes a widespread issue.

Officer Dutler mentions a little bit of information shared on social media can lead scammers down a rabbit hole of finding out a lot about you. 

“So it’s very important to keep that information private, and a lot of people use aliases or nicknames and things like that on their social media profiles anyway to kind of limit the amount of information that you put out to strangers, people that you don’t know,” said Ofc. Andrew Dutler, Crime Prevention Officer.

If you have been a victim of identity theft, contact the Sioux City Police Department at 712-279-6440 and make fraud reports with the Federal Trade Commission.

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