Hackers Exploit Coronavirus News

Hackers Exploit Coronavirus NewsHackers prey on human emotion in normal times. They send phishing emails that might appear to come from your healthcare provider, your state government, or Amazon. These emails are generally trying to do one of two things: get you to click on a link that will install malware or persuade you to give them information like a password or credit card number.

As expected, hackers and scammers are using the pandemic and the government response as a way to get money or information from people. There are scams for test kits, scams for masks, and scams for statistics on the virus. There are hackers attacking individuals on Medicare, and of course multiple scams for the government relief checks.

There have been numerous reported attacks over the past few weeks on the healthcare industry. Hackers are posing as the World Health Organization, or the CDC in attempt to infiltrate healthcare networks. These industries are already under a huge amount of stress, so it would be easy for an employee to click on a link in an email that they normally wouldn’t.

The Federal Trade Commission is warning Americans of hackers trying to take advantage of the news of relief money. The FTC advises, “You don’t need to do anything as long as you filed taxes in 2018 or 2019.”and “Do not give anyone your personal information to “sign-up” for your relief check. There is nothing to sign up for.”

This is a good time to familiarize yourself and your employees with phishing red flags.

  1. The email plays on urgency and emotion. “Click here before the end of the day, or else…”
  2. Bad spelling and grammar.
  3. Suspicious links or attachments. Phishing campaigns are either trying to get information from you or get you to click a link or open an attachment that will install malware.
  4. Altered web address or email address from a free service.

During this time while emotions are high, users need to be more aware of what they click on in emails. Employees working from home give hackers even more of an advantage, because many users are not behind the company firewall they used to be. Stay vigilant and be aware that hackers are using the news of the day and high emotions to their advantage.

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Posted by Charles Wright