McAfee says Cyber Criminals are exploiting Corona fears

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As most companies are asking their employees to work from home to keep their business operations alive during the Corona Virus pandemic crisis, a research conducted by Cybersecurity Firm McAfee says that the trend is being exploited by hackers who are making money by launching malicious apps, phishing campaigns, malware and harmful websites.

McAfee COVID 19 Threat Report says that hackers have launched 375 new cyber threats per minute during the lockdown and pandemic spread with an intention to exploit the fear prevailing in public related to the virus.


As most shoppers are sticking to web portals to quench their shopping needs, scammers are also seen targeting these folks to siphon money from their bank accounts by fraudulent means.

Both National Cyber Security Centre and National Crime Agency have warned that there has been a surge in cyber crime in the past 3 months where some scammers are seen posing as government officials trying to gain personal info of public in the name of contact tracing of COVID 19 infected patients.

“What began as a phishing campaign and malicious app exploitation has turned into a deluge of malicious URLs sent by threat actors,” said Raj Samani, the Chief Scientist at McAfee.

As the world is interested in knowing more about Corona, its symptoms, treatment and vaccine, cyber crooks are seen making this inquest as an entry mechanism to launch cyber attacks.

“This pandemic has changed the lives of us both offline and online as many of the daily human activities like entertainment, shopping, socializing, banking have shifted to web”,  says Jesus Sanchez Aguilera Gracia, the Head of EMEA Consumer at McAfee. And this is where hackers have sensed an opportunity to trick web users into visiting malicious websites that can be used to install malware to steal info like passwords and banking credentials.

He added that every day over 1600 web users fall prey to email scams that rise out of COVID 19 fear making the web user to download malware into personal devices.

And the only way to tackle the situation is to create awareness among web users about the ongoing cyber scams and asking them to defend their devices by anti-malware solutions. Also, for businesses having a data backup plan along with a threat monitoring solution is necessary during the Corona health crisis as it help in locking any malicious link or email from downloading a malware like ransomware.