Fake COVID-19 vaccination certs sold on Telegram

Russians are reportedly using the messaging app Telegram to buy and sell counterfeit COVID-19 vaccination certificates for around $25.

The sellers claim that the fake certificates will allow Russians to board international flights, and avoid mandatory vaccination in Russia for students or medical workers, and other professionals, according to a Coda report.

Russia’s immunisation programme for COVID-19 is being hampered by mistrust of the Sputnik V vaccine developed by the country’s Gamaleya Institute, despite data published in The Lancet medical journal backing the safety and efficacy of the shot and strong demand in other countries.

Nearly 5.4m out of Russia’s 144m population (less than 4 per cent) had received at least one dose of Sputnik V as of March 12, with 3.5m having two doses, according to Statista.

Photo by Christian Wiediger on Unsplash

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