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County warns of false text messages for vaccination appointments

Santa Clara County officials warned this week of unofficial texts inviting residents to make a vaccination appointment in the county.

The texts wrongfully claim an “extra” supply of vaccines and provides a link to register for one of the county’s vaccination sites.

To the county’s knowledge, someone was able to access the link that goes to the state’s vaccination platform, CalVax, and texted that link to an untold amount of people.

County Executive Jeff Smith said:

“We know this because we had a huge amount of people show up to Berger [vaccination site] who didn’t have an appointment and they told us they were able to get on the appointment list by getting access to CalVax without going through our typical system.”

Smith said a link is given to those who are eligible for vaccination only after they have completed a declaration that they meet priority requirements.

Right now, that means people who are in Phase 1A, which includes health care workers and long-term care facility residents and staff.

The county expects to move into vaccinating those in Phase 1B tier 1 — those over 75 years and older and other essential frontline workers.

The county is currently investigating the erroneous text messages. Smith said whoever sent it did not hack the system and instead was able to “inappropriately” get access to the link.

The county’s vaccination systems and information are secure, Smith assured the county’s board of supervisors on Tuesday.

To access more vaccine information for Santa Clara County, people can visit sccfreevax.org.

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