- New phishing campaigns discovered impersonating the WHO and popular conferencing platforms, to steal sensitive information
- Check Point has seen 192,000 coronavirus-related cyber-attacks per week over the past three weeks, a 30% increase compared to previous weeks
- In the past three weeks, almost 20,000 new coronavirus-related domains were registered: 17% of these are malicious or suspicious
While we all try to get used to the Covid-19 pandemic’s ‘new normal’ in our work and home lives, this year has been a time of unprecedented opportunity for cyber-criminals. The global response to the pandemic, and our desire for the latest information about it, has supercharged criminals’ and hackers’ business-as-usual models of phishing emails and fake websites.
Both Interpol and Europol have warned of huge spikes in COVID-19 fraud. In mid-April, Google reported that in just one week, it saw more than 18 million daily malware and phishing emails related to Covid-19 scams were sent via Gmail alone – and that’s in addition to the 240 million daily Covid-19 related spam messages Google saw.
So why do criminals rely so heavily on phishing emails to launch attacks? The answer is simple: because they continue to work. Verizon’s 2019 Data Breach Investigations Report showed that 32% of corporate data breaches started with a phishing email. What’s more, phishing was present in 78% of cyber-espionage incidents. So it’s no surprise that criminals will keep on trying to trick users into giving up sensitive information by taking advantage of the interest around the pandemic, and impersonating well-known organizations and companies such as the World Health Organization (WHO), Zoom, Microsoft or Google.
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