Got a mail saying COVID-19 is now airborne? Beware. Hackers are in a hyperactive mode to trick people and create misinformation.
Data Ingenious Global Limited, a pioneer in IT Services in India with expertise in Internet, Networking, Web Technology, and Software consultancy, has called for safeguarding against phishing (cybercrime) in times of disastrous outbreak of coronavirus.
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The IT company has advised people to ignore emails that call on a sense of urgency, unsolicited advisory, donations or have an alarmist tone, this being a decoy to trick people.
Founder and CEO of Data Ingenious Global Dr Ajay Data said, “Hackers are going into overdrive during the outbreak of COVID-19 and therefore, the most effective way to protect against phishing in the times of pandemic is to be vigilant while working online. Apart from the individuals, company data are also on stake.”
Hackers are capitalising on fear and panic due to coronavirus and they are financially motivated attackers who try to exploit people by spreading malware to steal data from unsuspecting users.
“Emails with attachments, originating from unknown sources can be cyber attacks. First of all, we need to avoid downloading such attachments coming from unknown sources. There may be emails from domains similar to the World Health Organisation (WHO) or other health organisations with malicious downloads. These downloads can release malware that infects the system. These emails also prompt to manually enter email login details, resulting in users unwittingly compromising their data,” said Dr Data.
Even WHO had released a notification that implored people to beware of hackers posing as organisation representatives and verify their authenticity before giving away any detail via email, websites, text messages, and even phone calls.
Cyber attacks range from clipboard stealing to several other threats such as tax-related scams, donation to help, vaccine-related information; job-related fake advertisements, and payments through Bitcoins among others. Hackers are also using fear-mongering tactics that aim to encourage clicks and downloads. “COVID-19 is now airborne” is their new prank.
“Hackers send phishing link to people via email or message. Users are tempted to click on this link and that lands them to the phishing page which gives an impression of an original website and users log in there with security ID and Password. Once users do that, their ID and Password go to the hacker and the users do not even know that they have become victims of phishing attack,” warns Dr Data.
Tips to avoid a phishing attack
Be alert while being on the internet
Implement security solutions that protect the company’s email environment
Do not click on any unknown link and do not enter your information in any unknown link.
Ensure that your software on your PC is up-to-date
Never give out your personal information unless it is to a verified source
Emails received should be examined for grammatical errors and spelling mistakes