Fake coronavirus test results being sold on black market to tourists

People are apparently so desperate to travel that they’re turning to the black market, according to recent reports.

Many countries are requiring that visitors get negative coronavirus test results before they’re allowed to enter, but some people are trying to sidestep the rule by buying fake test results.

Forged negative coronavirus tests have already been reported in France, Brazil and the UK.

However, it is unlikely that a high number of travelers would be able to use fake test results because protocols are becoming more high tech, according to a report from The Washington Post.

Last week, French officials arrested six men and one woman for reportedly selling false test certificates to travelers for between $180 and $360 at Charles de Gaulle Airport in Paris.

They were charged with forgery, use of forgery and complicity in fraud.

The investigation into the false test results started in September with the discovery of a passenger who checked in for a flight to Ethiopia with a fake document that certified receiving negative test results.

Meanwhile, officials in Brazil arrested four domestic tourists on Oct. 29 because they allegedly faked their coronavirus test results in order to visit the Fernando de Noronha archipelago.

The two men and two women from the Brazilian state of Tocantins took a private jet to the islands and presented test results that were not recent enough to visit the archipelago.

When officials asked to retest them, the tourists refused and showed new results with a more recent date. However, when officials called the laboratory, they found out that the documents had been changed.

Last month, the Lancashire Telegraph reported that people were doctoring coronavirus test results in the UK, as well.

According to the newspaper, one man said he was able to travel to Pakistan after a friend gave him a negative test and he changed the document to show his name and birthday. He also told the newspaper he changed the testing date to be within the required time limit.

The Telegraph also reported that a travel agent promised someone they would provide a negative test result for £50 (about $66), even if the traveler tested positive.

The Washington Post reported that some places are following more high-tech regulations to avoid false test results. One example, according to the newspaper, is Hawaii, which requires visitors to use an approved testing partner, register with the state’s testing program and upload their results online.

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