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Coronavirus and the Latest Cybersecurity News Updates

06 Mar 2020 - Category:
corona virus

The coronavirus death toll has surpassed  , with death looming over 89,000 others that are infected by this deadly virus.  Countries across the globe seem to be preparing themselves to tackle this pandemic, which isn’t easy due to the lack of cure and awareness. To make things worse, myths and falsities circulated electronically have created further confusion.

While Coronavirus is a serious issue that authorities worldwide are trying to deal with, cybercriminals have resorted to something else. Therefore, we bring you the most recent cybersecurity news updates along with all the necessary information required to dodge coronavirus-related cyberattacks.

Coronavirus and Cybersecurity News Updates

Coronavirus is currently a global concern and has caused a stir among the masses, who are keen on consuming every bit of useful information in this regard. As a result, cybercriminals that are fully aware of this curiosity, have been using the situation to their advantage by spreading computer virus and malware disguised as useful coronavirus-related information.

China has the highest number of coronavirus infection cases, with over 80, 152 cases and 2,945 deaths being confirmed. So, it is no secret that most people are desperate for a cure and while health organizations worldwide are doing their best to find one, there are some who have been trying to take undue advantage of someone else’s miseries.

According to China’s Computer Virus Emergency Response Center and the State-operated news agency Xinhua, a certain malware by the name ‘coronavirus.exe’ and ‘novel coronavirus.exe’ is being circulated through social media, emails, etc… Neither the Response Center nor Xinhua have confirmed the form of cyberattack, however based on the statements made by Xinhua, it appears to be a phishing attack.

Earlier, Xinhua stated that this malware could gain remote control over infected devices and steal data, based on which it seems to be a phishing attack that targets financial data which can later be misused. Although these phishing attacks have been launched across the globe, China appears to be the worst hit.

How is the Coronavirus Cyberattack launched?

Cybercriminals involved in this cyberattack have been using a simple modus operandi — shoot messages and emails claiming to have exclusive information connected to coronavirus. So, if you receive an email or message on social media or through any other electronic medium then beware, your personal data could be at risk.

Also, if you receive messages claiming to be from leading health organizations, then these are most likely to be false. It's not uncommon for cybercriminals to make use of such opportunities to infect systems with malware as the recipient is most likely to fall prey to their bait. Nevertheless, information is key and if you wish to stay informed about coronavirus without losing control over your computers, tablets, and mobile devices then here are some useful tips.

Pick your sources wisely

Browsing through the official website of reputed organizations such as the NHS and WHO is the easiest way to keep yourself updated about coronavirus. These organizations post all major announcements on their official websites and seldom send out individual email notifications to spread awareness.

Organizations like the NHS and WHO have all the resources required to report major breakthroughs like coronavirus cure through the appropriate authorities. So, if you receive emails or messages claiming to be from such organizations, then there’s something fishy about it. In most cases, it is a phishing email that you have received. If you still cannot resist browsing through the information received, then here are some tips that you can follow to confirm the authenticity of the information received.

Check the Sender’s details

The most common tactic used to entice recipients into clicking malicious links is by leveraging the goodwill of well-known organizations. So, when you receive an email from someone claiming to represent a reputed organization, take the time out to verify the domain name in the email ID against the organization’s official website. The domain extension in the email id refers to the portion after the @ symbol and must entirely match with the official website. For example, the official website of NHS is ‘www.nhs.uk’ and if you receive a message from xyz@nhs.info then it is most likely to be from a cybercriminal. As you can see, the domain extension of the official NHS website is ‘.uk’.

Don’t be Compelled by pressure building tactics

Often, cybercriminals design emails and messages to build pressure on the recipient in order to compel them to click on it. So, if you receive any such messages or emails, don’t feel pressurized to open it and click on the link. If there is some major breakthrough in the coronavirus issue, then the concerned Authorities such as the Health Ministry would make the necessary declarations. You can be sure that none of it would be made through personal emails but through reliable and reputed news channels.

Don’t share personal and sensitive information

Avoid sharing your personal details with anyone for whatever reasons they may claim. Your username, password, or bank details are not required for you to access publicly available information. However, if you have already provided that to the wrong people, then quickly do the necessary damage control by changing your password.

At present, 78 countries worldwide are affected by the coronavirus, a pandemic that has caused a global economic slowdown. With so many countries working towards resolving this issue and finding a cure for it, every development in this regard would be a major announcement. Therefore, you can be sure that a coronavirus cure would be announced through reliable news agencies worldwide and not through an email or social media message.

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