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Waiting for your vaccine? Now is not a good time to ignore 'Unknown' or 'Private' callers

Health officials warn that many people waiting for a callback may be getting those calls from numbers that typically look like spam.

HOUSTON — If you are anxiously awaiting an appointment for your COVID-19 vaccination, you may have to put up with spam calls and emails until you get your first and second shot.

On Tuesday, health officials in Fort Bend County warned that some return calls to set up appointments for second COVID shots may be calls coming from "unknown" or "private" numbers — something many of us are used to ignoring.

Some phones feature settings or apps that automatically block these types of calls, so if you are waiting on a callback, you will want to doublecheck these settings.

In addition, many online-only registrations and appointment bookings rely on your email to verify your identity or make appointment changes. Some people are finding these automatic emails are going to their junk, spam, newsletter or promotions folders. So again, if you're waiting on an email response for your coronavirus vaccine booking, you will want to keep a close eye on all of your email folders.

It's a minor inconvenience that will insure you don't miss out on a very important shot.

But be on the lookout for scam calls and emails

It's important to know that scammers are trying to take advantage of those wanting to get vaccinated for coronavirus. While health officials and facilities are reaching out to book second appointments, know that some calls and emails will be unwarranted.

Remember: if you didn't ask for a response, call or email, it may be a scammer trying to trick you. Especially if they are asking for money.

Earlier this month, the FBI said to be on the lookout for scammers offering you early access to a COVID-19 vaccine in exchange for payment of a deposit or fee.

  • The department said these are the signs of potential scams to look out for:
  • You are asked to pay out of pocket to get the vaccine
  • You are asked to pay to put your name on a vaccine waiting list or to get early access
  • Advertisements for vaccines through social media platforms, email, telephone calls, online, or from unsolicited/unknown sources
  • Marketers offering to sell or ship doses of the vaccine for payment 

Stop posting pictures of your COVID-19 vaccine card on social media, BBB warns

The COVID-19 vaccine sticker selfie is the new "I Voted" trend on social media. Unfortunately, some people are posting pictures of their vaccine card and the Better Business Bureau says you should stop. 

While you may be excited you got the shot -- and you want to share the excitement with your friends on social media, the BBB says not to post your vaccine card.

"Unfortunately, your card has your full name and birthday on it, as well as information about where you got your vaccine," the BBB said in a statement. "If your social media privacy settings aren’t set high, you may be giving valuable information away for anyone to use."

Read more here

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