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Covid-19 Cyber Security and Scams

posted on Friday, March 27, 2020

Coronavirus (COVID-19) is having a significant impact on the daily lives of people all around the world. As humanity comes together to alleviate the spread of this contagious virus, there are cyber-criminals that are taking advantage of these uncertain times to send malicious emails and scam people over the internet. The tips below give an overview on how to safely and successfully go about your new virtual day-to-day life without falling victim to these cyber-criminals.

Coronavirus Scams

Due to Covid-19, people all across the world are working and spending a majority of their time at home. With the rise in at-home internet use, cyber-criminals are using this as an opportunity to strike more fear into individuals and make them more susceptible to being scammed. Below are some tips from government related organizations for you to stay safe online during these uncertain times.

The Federal-Trade Commision (FTC) is warning consumers of the following coronavirus- related scams:

  • Watch for emails claiming to be from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) or experts saying they have information about the virus. For the most up-to-date information about the Coronavirus, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO).
  • Hang up on robocalls. Don’t press any numbers. Scammers are using illegal robocalls to pitch everything from scam Coronavirus treatments to work-at-home schemes. The recording might say that pressing a number will let you speak to a live operator or remove you from their call list, but it might lead to more robocalls, instead.
  • Ignore online offers for vaccinations and home test kits. Scammers are trying to get you to buy products that aren’t proven to treat or prevent the Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) — online or in stores. At this time, there also are no FDA-authorized home test kits for the Coronavirus. Visit the FDA to learn more.
  • Know who you’re buying from. Online sellers may claim to have in-demand products, like cleaning, household, and health and medical supplies when, in fact, they don’t.
  • Don’t click on links from sources you don’t know. They could download viruses onto your computer or device.

The The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) is warning consumers of the following coronavirus- related scams:

  • Avoid clicking on links in unsolicited emails and be wary of email attachments. See Using Caution with Email Attachments and Avoiding Social Engineering and Phishing Scams for more information.
  • Do not reveal personal or financial information in email, and do not respond to email solicitations for this information.
  • Use trusted sources—such as legitimate, government websites—for up-to-date, fact-based information about COVID-19.
  • Verify a charity’s authenticity before making donations. Review the Federal Trade Commission’s page on Charity Scams for more information.
  • Review CISA Insights on Risk Management for COVID-19 for more information.

During these uncertain times it is important to remain vigilant and take the proper precautions to avoid being scammed over the internet.