Cyber hackers’ phishing campaigns exploit global concern about the Coronavirus

Cyber hackers are taking advantage of the coronavirus outbreak by sending messages to victims spreading conspiracy theories about unpublished medicines and treatments, and by using the name of legitimate health organisations. This way, attackers are trying to steal information or distribute links to websites designed to steel identification information such as login credentials.

Here’s an example of a phishing email impersonating the World Health Organisation with an attachment that leads to the installation of malware

In recent months, many fraudulent sites have been identified as seeking to sell face masks, vaccines, and home virus detection kits.

How can I protect myself?

  • Suspect threatening messages like “If you don’t open the file….”, 50 more vaccines left to purchase” or seductive (“Purchase vaccine/mask at 70% off”)
  • Check the sender’s name and address carefully – Do not open links or perform actions coming from an unknown sender or from someone whose credibility is questionable.
  • Avoid clicking suspicious links in emails or clicking promotional links, proactively  search for your sites and services using your browser.
  • Avoid downloading/ opening attachments in unfamiliar or suspicious emails – scammers try to entice you with documents that allegedly contain virus protection instructions, but they contain malware.