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Vendors are cashing in on people desperate to leapfrog the line—or falsely certify that they got the shot.Security researchers have experienced a spike in listings on dark web marketplaces in recent weeks. The sites are advertising everything from vaccine doses to falsified vaccine certifications and negative test results. Currently, a lot more than 1,200 listings are offering a variety of vaccines, including Pfizer, Moderna, Johnson & Johnson, AstraZeneca, Sputnik, and Sinopharm.
Investigations by researchers at security firm Check Point have now been monitoring the sites for Covid-19-related activity since January, and they report a three-fold upsurge in such activity during the last three months. It’s unclear if the doses are legitimate, and even when these were, there’s no guarantee that the vials have been stored at the correct temperature, potentially rendering them useless.
A week ago, Check Point researchers based in Israel attempted to get the Sinopharm vaccine from one vendor, said Ekram Ahmed, a spokesperson for the company. “We tried to negotiate and choose the Chinese vaccine through one of many vendors,” he told Ars. The team messaged owner, who directed them to keep the negotiations on Telegram. Once there, the seller provided reassurances that the vaccine doses were legitimate. The researchers sent $500 to a Bitcoin wallet, and while they’ve received a FedEx shipping label, they have yet to get the shipment.
Dark web vendors are most likely doing better business selling falsified vaccine cards and negative test results. “Lately, we’re seeing more vaccination certificates being offered” than vaccines, Ahmed said. “It’s probably a two-to-one ratio.”
With COVID-19 testing becoming more widespread, the cost for negative test results is as little as $25. Vaccination cards are harder in the future by and are selling for more, around $200. These certificates are becoming passports of sorts, allowing people a freedom of movement they haven’t enjoyed in months. The European Union is in the process of creating a “digital green certificate” which they aspire to roll out by June to allow its citizens and residents to visit across borders. In the US, evidence of vaccination could grant people use of certain venues, and employers may require it of their employees to go back to the workplace.
The researchers have alerted Europol to the listing and are contacting others today.the Check Point spokesperson, stated that the sellers they contacted on dark web marketplaces were hoping to set up long-term relationships making use of their customers. The prospective dark0de market – https://c418wiki.absolutelywhizzer.co.uk/index.php?title=Super_Easy_Ways_To_Handle_Your_Extra_Darkode_Reborn, he explained, “are folks on the floor, people who are looking to spread and sell at the neighborhood level in bulk.”
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