An Irish citizen is selling fake COVID-19 vaccine passes to people who have not yet completed the vaccination process, but wish to travel without undergoing coronavirus restrictions.
According to the Irish Times, the person selling these fake passes is believed to be a drug dealer. It’s asking for up to €350 per pass submitted via the dark web, TheSchengen.com reports.
Just like the original type of vaccination card, the certificate purchased from this person contains a unique QR code that shows the name of its holder when scanned. Aside from the digital copy, a printed HSE Irish Card is also issued, which is indistinguishable apart from the original form of the document.
Thus, this means that all those who bought a fake permit can currently travel freely and access various inland places where these certificates are likely to be effective and will remain so until the authorities discover them.
With the exception of the vaccination permit, the other two types of certificates that fall under the COVID-19 card – recovery certificates and negative test results – can also be purchased on the dark web.
Soon after the Republic of Ireland National Police Service found out about these illegal actions, the country’s authorities began working on a solution that would put an end to these activities. In addition, they called on the citizens of the country to cooperate with the authorities and follow the health guidelines and regulations.
>> Travel to Ireland amid COVID-19: Current entry rules and restrictions
Aside from Ireland, other similar illegal activities have been discovered in other countries. Earlier this month, the European Union authorities launched an investigation after discovering that the digital certificate portal was hacked for COVID-19.
Several fake COVID permit codes circulated online after the digital key used to sign and verify the EU’s COVID-19 digital certificate was leaked. Those who used the official system through the use of illegal methods issued certificates with the names of two fictitious figures and one for the founder of the Nazi Party, Adolf Hitler.
The last symbol has been circulating for several days across various social media platforms. When the code was scanned into the Italian Verifica C19 app, people were able to see that the certificate’s name was “Hitler Adolf” and included his date of birth.
These measures were strongly condemned by the European Union authorities, and said that such illegal activities may cause inconvenience to those who have been vaccinated and have obtained a certificate from the official authorities.
>> Ireland offers a COVID certificate application portal for Irish passport holders who have been vaccinated in third countries