Phishing Scams and COVID-19

As if we didn’t already have enough to worry about, technology experts have noted an increase of cyber criminals taking advantage of the current pandemic. Coronavirus scams started to appear in January as fear and confusion about the virus grew. Within the month of March alone, over 100,000 new domains were registered containing terms like virus, covid or corona. Although many are legitimate websites, some could be malicious.

One new Android application posing as a COVID-19 tracking map from Johns Hopkins University was actually spyware connected to Libya.

Be extra, extra careful following links online or in emails that offer information about the coronavirus, prevention, or cures.

Hackers use news topics and fear to trick users into opening an email or following a link. These actions could leave you vulnerable to ransomware, computer viruses, or other malware.

With more people working from home, risk is elevated as home networks may have fewer defenses and home WIFI can be less secure.

Be sure your home malware and firewalls are up to date and be suspicious if asked for personal information.

Don’t open emails from unknown senders, and be wary of attachments or links to coronavirus information. Be careful when loading new applications onto your devices. Social media posts and ads also may contain threats.

Prepare yourself and your family by having a cybersecurity plan in place. Back up your computer and other devices. Change passwords frequently. Use dual authentication.