Behind the black market for fake COVID-19 vaccine passports: 5 things to know 

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The black market for fake COVID-19 vaccine passports is growing as countries mandate them, not just for international travel, but to gain access to jobs, restaurants and events, Fortune reported Aug. 7. 

Five things to know: 

1. People in wealthy countries who do not want to get vaccinated and people who can't get vaccinated are the two dominant groups fueling the explosion of COVID-19 vaccine certificates and passports on the black market. 

2. Offers for fake vaccine passports usually start emerging on the black market after a country tightens requirements. For example, offers started appearing in France after it made the digital tech mandatory in July for people entering leisure and cultural venues, according to Euro News

3. The fake certificates and passports are easy to find. While the offers first came through on the dark web, transactions have moved to other platforms, including the WhatsApp messaging services and Facebook groups. 

4. The shift to messenger platforms indicates that sellers are targeting buyers who are inexperienced with maneuvering the dark web and are less adept at spotting scams, Liad Mizrachi, a security expert at Check Point Software Technologies, told the publication. 

5. Most of the market seeking fake COVID-19 documents are likely people in countries that lack access to the vaccine. But a new group, those who don't consider themselves to be generally anti-vaccine but still don't want to take the COVID-19 vaccine, is also emerging as customers on the black market, according to the report.


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