If you are working from home or you are at home more because of lock down, please look out for scam phone calls and emails, some explioting the Covid 19 outbreak.
In addition to the risks on your computer, there are some common phone scams:
- Bank scams – someone claims to be from your bank telling you there’s a problem with your card or account. They then ask for your account, card details, and PIN number.
- Computer repair scams – the helpdesk at Microsoft call to say that your computer has a virus and ask you to download ‘antivirus software’. This will be spyware.
- Compensation calls – they’re talking about that accident you had that wasn’t your fault. They can get you compensation. They just need a few details.
- HMRC (IRS) scams – they just need some bank details so they can pay you a tax refund.
- Pensions and investment scams – an ‘unmissable’ investment opportunity, they just need a few details.
But now, scammers are taking advantage of the spread of coronavirus to exploit consumers’ fears. Some their most common scams are:
- Click here for a cure – an email appears to be from a mysterious doctor claiming to have details about a vaccine being covered up by the Chinese and UK governments. Users clicking on the link get taken to a spoof webpage designed to harvest login details.
- Covid-19 tax refund – if people click on the “access your funds now” link in the email, they are taken to a fake government webpage, and encouraged to enter all their financial and tax information.
- WHO health document – the email doesn’t really come from the World Health Organization and the attached document doesn’t explain how recipients can prevent the disease spreading – instead, it infects computers with a keylogger that records every keystroke made by the user and sends it to the hacker.
- The virus is now airborne – an email that appears to come from the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Having increased the reader’s fear and panic levels, the link takes them to a spoof Microsoft page where they can enter their email and password.
- Donate here to help the fight – again the email appears to come from the CDC and asks for donations to develop a vaccine, and requests payments be made in Bitcoin.
Make sure you’re using multi-factor authentication (MFA) and make sure everything is encrypted. And stay safe and stay alert.