Bangor Drug Manager Amber Morin shows the Moderna coronavirus vaccine packaging on Jan. 12. Credit: Natalie Williams / BDN

PORTLAND, Maine — Scammers who use a false promise of a COVID-19 vaccine have attracted the attention of a federal prosecutor.

U.S. Attorney Halsey Frank of Maine said federal, state and local agencies have fielded complaints about the scams. The scammers typically use demand for the vaccine as a way to pry personal information such as Social Security numbers from victims.

Frank called the scammers “ruthless and relentless” and added “everyone needs to have their guard up.” He said everyone in the state should be skeptical of unsolicited offers of the coronavirus vaccine.

Frank also said residents should check with the state state health department for accurate information on availability of the vaccine.