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article imageBusinesses warned to beware of coronavirus scams online Special

By Tim Sandle     Mar 18, 2020 in Technology
Many websites and emails are promising vital information about COVID-19. The reality, however, is that a flood of them are scams that can enable malware, phishing attacks, ransomware, password theft. Pali Surdhar looks into the issue.
To add to the concerns that businesses face in relation to keeping going during the coronavirus pandemic comes warnings that malicious actors are seeking to exploit the uncertainty by seeking to take data or hold firms up through the use of ransomware.
This includes one risk where a hacker was pretending to be someone working at the U.S. Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). This was a cover to enable the hacker to try to infect consumer smartphones with a bad code called the Agent Tesla keylogger.
Looking at the risks and providing a warning to both businesses and consumers. Pali Surdhar, Chief Security Officer at nCipher Security says: "Hackers are taking advantage of the coronavirus situation. Be aware that you might start getting a lot of phishing emails."
It may also be that people can no longer trust a link sent from another business or one appearing to come from family, friends, or co-workers. This is even if the message comes with important sounding names and impressive looking logos. In other words, be suspicious and ensure strong cybersecurity measures are in place.
As well as the email risk, Surdhar also notes: "You might also get texts asking you to sign in. Articles about coronavirus are going to be interesting to anyone, and it’s a great way for attackers and hackers to get into your system and get some information from you."
This is not a hypothetical risk. To illustrate what can happen, Surdhar draws on a real-life case study: "FJohns Hopkins has an interactive coronavirus map. Hackers are creating maps that look very similar, and they are loading them with tools with malicious payloads. If you click on them, they are going to infect your machines, and then gain access and information."
This means, Surdhar says: "There is a danger. Be aware that there will be an increase in phishing emails trying to lure you to unsafe sites. Don’t give up your credentials willy-nilly. In fact, I just recommend that you go to trusted sources.”
More about coronavirus, Phising, Scams, Cybersecurity
 
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