Kaspersky Lab experts examined 15 shadow sites and found advertisements for the sale of three types of patented coronavirus vaccines, including those from Pfizer/BioNTech, AstraZeneca, and Moderna, as well as some not yet patented.
It turned out that the cost of a dose required for one person ranges from $250 to $1,200, but the average price is $500. At the same time, ads come mainly from France, Germany, Great Britain, and the USA, and communication with sellers is carried out through secure messengers with the auto-delete timer feature for messages in any chat. Payment is most often required in bitcoins. According to Kaspersky Lab, many advertisers have already conducted between 100 and 500 transactions.
The company cannot make an unambiguous conclusion whether the offers for the sale of vaccines on the darknet are scams or whether buyers really get what they are looking for.
“Medical institutions, pharmacies, and hospitals around the world often end the day with leftover vaccine doses. It’s not inconceivable that someone working at these facilities could pocket the extra doses and connect with dark web intermediaries to sell them. At the same time, a little bottle from a shady dealer on some anonymous forum in a dark corner of the Web can contain just about anything — from a harmless saline solution to something really dangerous. That said, it’s important to note that even if what’s being sold is the real deal, the dose may not be effective by the time it arrives,” says a cybersecurity expert at Kaspersky Lab.
Besides, users can find fake vaccination certificates on the darknet. The corresponding European document costs about $20-25.