While some online criminals have expressed concerns about exploiting the worst pandemic of the century, many others seem to have adjusted to the new abnormal. Research from the F-Secure Tactical Defense Unit has shown criminals adapting to exploit the economic impact of the global crisis. And we’re now seeing increasing examples of criminals exploiting COVID-19 through email, texts and more advanced attacks. Meanwhile, leading tech companies have joined the effort to help contain the threat through digital tracking.
Attackers divided on how to exploit (or not) COVID
As revenue sources have dried up from some online criminals, some are desperate to find new ways of making money and others are refraining from the exploitation of the worst pandemic of the century.
Routers hacked to push users to infected COVID-19 sites
A group of attackers has been breaking into routers and changing DNS settings to push users towards coronavirus-related sites that deliver malware such as the Oski trojan.
SMS attacks target dependency on home deliveries
Scammers are using phishing texts related to deliveries, to capitalize on people working from home and being reliant on delivery services. The texts purport to relate to Amazon or other goods deliveries.
Link: Naked Security
COVID-19 now most common theme for scam emails
Proofpoint now says that 4/5 of all scam emails use COVID related lures. Dozens of new email scams are launched each day:
COVID-themed malware wipes devices
There is now COVID-themed malware that overwrites the master boot record (MBR) of affected devices – essentially a wiper. It will prevent affected machines from booting:
Businesses advised against COVID-related threats, web conferencing privacy
The Australian Cyber Security Centre provided advice to small and medium sized businesses about how to respond to COVID-related threats and ways to protect their privacy while relying on video conferencing via the web.
Google reveals lockdown numbers
The world’s largest search company released tracking data to show the effectiveness of COVID lockdowns in 131 countries.
Google and Apple sync for global contact tracing effort
Tech giants and competitors Google and Apple announced a joint effort to track the contacts of individuals who contract COVID-19 through Bluetooth. The two companies say this will to help governments and health agencies reduce the spread of the virus.