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COVID Certificate Verification to Combat Fake Vaccine Certificate Scams

Most people have understood the importance of vaccines and are taking the right steps towards a safer environment. To boost the vaccination trend, governments have imposed restrictions on different industry sectors to verify covid certificates before providing any service.

What is a Vaccine Certificate?

When a person is jabbed, they get proof of their vaccination as a hard copy or in a digital form. It could be a card like an ID or a simple piece of paper, sometimes it is also referred to as a vaccine passport or vaccine card. It contains all the personal data and vaccine information, for instance:

  • Full name of the cardholder
  • Their identification number
  • Vaccine type
  • Date of vaccination

The vaccine certificate also identifies whether a person is fully or partially vaccinated to keep a true record of their vaccination status.

Furthermore, these certificates can only be issued through concerned government departments and authorized labs

In today’s covid-ridden world, people are required to present vaccination proof at airports, cinemas, shopping malls, arenas, and public transport. In a traditional setup, staff members at these respective locations are tasked with verifying the vaccination certificate at the earliest interaction.

New Scam in Town — Fake Vaccine Certificates

businesses have been mandated under new regulatory regimes to verify vaccine certificates of customers to eliminate the risk of fake or tampered vaccine certificates. The move was introduced following recent fraud cases where criminals were caught using fake vaccination proofs, via documents that were either completely fake or photoshopped.

Fraudsters steal authentic reports and alter them using sophisticated software so that one report can be used by multiple people simply by changing the name. According to Guardian, false Covid-19 test reports and vaccine certificates are sold worth as little as £25 with more than 1200 vendors involved in this scam.

An Israeli cyber firm recently revealed that the famous messaging app Telegram was involved in the sale of fake vaccine passports and negative test reports. The security company identified and reported the fraudulent group to law enforcement agencies.

According to The New York Times, Manhattan criminal court charged a woman for selling forged vaccine cards. The prosecutor said that she was using two social media accounts and sold nearly 250 forged vaccine cards.

These events demand a robust and automated solution that can verify the authenticity of vaccine certificates.

Digital Covid Certificate Verification

To combat fake vaccination-related scams, countries are looking forward to verifying them. Fake documents are not a new thing, there are hundreds of cases where phoney IDs were used for identity theft.

In the Digital Covid Certificate Verification process, users just have to upload the image of the required ID and the system analyses its format, just like in know your customer, a method of identity verification. KYC has proved very effective in verifying the ID documents remotely. Similarly, the Covid certificate can be verified, users just have to upload or capture the image.

As a matter of fact, manual verification would not be that effective because vaccination cards are made with advanced technologies. This is because the human eye can’t spot the difference between original and fake vaccine passport

Why do People Use Fake Vaccine Certificates?

Precisely speaking, the reason behind the emergence of fake vaccine certificates could be the nervousness of common people with vaccine side effects. Due to restrictions, they have to present a vaccination card for travelling, hotel accommodation and entering any public space. So, they go for fake certificates instead of getting a real one through vaccination. This gives an advantage to fraudsters to make good money by selling fake vaccine certificates.

Different countries have introduced their mobile application for covid certificate verification. In August 2021, Malaysia launched a covid certificate verification app for digital and paper certificates. All the information written on the document is verified through the app.

What Shufti Pro Offers

Shufti Pro’s digital covid certificate verification validates the authenticity of vaccine certificates. It does not require any installation or integration, the covid vaccine certificate will be verified on the go. The solution provides global coverage, it can verify all the formats of vaccine passports issued by all the labs. Shufti Pro’s solution is GDPR-compliant, protecting the data of users and ensuring complete privacy.

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Shufti Pro is an AI-powered SaaS product offering KYC, Identity Verification and AML Compliance solutions in over 230 Countries of the world.

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Candice Spencer

Researcher, Fraud Preventer, Traveller, Reader, Writer, Thinker :)