Cybercriminals have been highly active since the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic, they have seized the situation as an opportunity to send phishing, craft social scams and spread misinformation. There have been several disclaimers from health organizations such as the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Nigeria Center for Disease Control (NCDC) on supposed emails from them. They have released several warnings about COVID-19 related messages that were not released by them.
In the new-normal of the world, the sad truth is that the average person cannot tell which messages are valid and from the actual organizations and this puts people in danger losing important and sensitive data.
Certain precautions can be taken by individuals and businesses to safeguard their information and digital work tools during and post-covid19;
- If you are not expecting a mail from a person or company, be very wary of clicking on any links or opening any attachments in those emails.
- Be conscious of clicking on links and downloading attachments known senders, it is important to cross-check links to confirm that company names in the links are spelt correctly and match the expected company sources.
- Always update your devices with security updates and use an antivirus or anti-malware service, these services are quick to spot malware and misleading URLs, thereby safeguarding important data
- Get educated on how to recognize phishing attempts and report suspected encounters, this includes watching out for spelling, bad grammar, suspicious links and attachments from unknown sources.
- Choose and install applications from known sources. Always review the validity of the application owner or developer.
- Limit the permissions of the installed applications on mobile devices to the barest minimum needed for its functions.
PHISHING in COVID-19
Phishing is one of the most common attack techniques used so far in the COVID-19 pandemic.
A lot of organizations have been the prime targets for impersonation by attackers. Organizations which command authority in the health world are perceived as credible to most people, thus, attackers have set traps for their victims with URLs and document downloads using promises of important safety documentation.
As global health organizations and social networks take cautionary means, people must safeguard their assets and information from cybercriminals to ensure they do not fall prey them to the methods.