It begs the question: how do you know what's real and what's a scam?By Nicole Ford

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – The hunt for a vaccine may be easier with UPMC’s new registration portal, but days after it launched, people are receiving texts claiming to come from UPMC asking for more information.

“So then I look at the phone number where this text message comes from and it’s not even a number that is affiliated with UPMC,” said Wynne Keatley.

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The message asked Keatley for more information to secure a COVID-19 vaccine appointment for her and her husband. She did register on UPMC’s portal on Saturday.

(Photo: KDKA)

“I gave them a bunch of information, they sent me back an email saying yes we received your request,” Keatley said.

So immediately the red flags went up for her.

“I get so much stuff, you don’t know what to trust,” Keatley said.

It turns out that this message is real. UPMC said anyone who received it needs to follow the link to schedule an appointment, but it begs the question: how do you know what’s real and what’s a scam?

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“You really have to do your research to protect yourself from potential scams, be skeptical of anything that seems too good to be true,” said Caitlin Driscoll with the Better Business Bureau.

Driscoll said Keatley did everything right. She checked out the phone number and reached out to UPMC directly for answers.

“Only sign up for vaccine waiting lists directly through these verified sources and recognize how you can be legitimately contacted for the vaccine as well. Ignore any calls for immediate action that involve your personal and financial information,” Driscoll said.

Bottom line is to be cautious and always ask questions before entering any information.

“I’m not going to be responding to some text message from some unknown number and you want my personal information, uh no,” Keatley said.

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The BBB said scams targeting the 65 and older population about the COVID-19 vaccine are up and advises you to keep track of what lists you’ve signed up for and how you signed up so that your personal information isn’t shared with third parties.