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Vendors are cashing in on people desperate to leapfrog the line—or falsely certify they got the shot.Security researchers have observed a spike in listings on dark web marketplaces in recent weeks. The sites are advertising from vaccine doses to falsified vaccine certifications and negative test results. Currently, a lot more than 1,200 listings are offering many different vaccines, including Pfizer, Moderna, Johnson & Johnson, AstraZeneca, Sputnik, darkode reborn – https://c418wiki.absolutelywhizzer.co.uk/index.php?title=8_Ways_You_Can_Eliminate_Dark0de_Market_Out_Of_Your_Business and Sinopharm.
Investigations by researchers at security firm Check Point have already been monitoring the sites for Covid-19-related activity since January, and they report a three-fold upsurge in such activity over the last three months. It’s unclear if the doses are legitimate, and even if they certainly were, there’s no guarantee that the vials have now been stored at the proper temperature, potentially rendering them useless.
Last week, Check Point researchers situated in Israel attempted to purchase the Sinopharm vaccine from one vendor, said Ekram Ahmed, a spokesperson for the company. “We tried to negotiate and purchase the Chinese vaccine through one of many vendors,” he told Ars. The team messaged the vendor, who directed them to continue the negotiations on Telegram. Once there, the vendor provided reassurances that the vaccine doses were legitimate. The researchers sent $500 to a Bitcoin wallet, and while they have received a FedEx shipping label, they’ve yet for the shipment.
Dark web vendors are 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 to come 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 act of creating a “digital green certificate” they hope to roll out by June allowing its citizens and residents to visit across borders. In the US, proof vaccination could grant people usage of certain venues, and employers may require it of their employees to return to the workplace.
The researchers have alerted Europol to the listing and are contacting others today.the Check Point spokesperson, said that the sellers they contacted on dark web marketplaces were hoping to setup long-term relationships making use of their customers. The prospective market, he said, “are folks on the ground, folks who are trying to spread and sell at the area level in bulk.”
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