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In a recent article, Wired Magazine discussed how criminals are using the coronavirus pandemic to forward their malicious behavior. The article discussed how at least one hospital was subject to a targeted ransomware attack, and some Android users were tricked into downloading software that claimed to provide virus updates. Instead of doing anything useful, the fake software was designed to steal the user’s information. The United States Secret Service has warned that this type of scam is on the rise.
As there is so much good information available from official sources, and the information will likely be updated often, I felt it was better to list trusted resources for information.
The following are some reputable COVID-19 sources:
Federal Communications Commission
https://www.fcc.gov/covid-scams - This is the official website of the FCC and contains information on scams and robocalls. It also contains several audio examples of scammers.
The White House
https://www.coronavirus.gov -This source is from The White House, CDC, and FEMA. It has information on what to do if you think you may be sick and contains important information for a variety of people and businesses.
The World Health Organization
https://www.who.int – This is the official website for the World Health Organization. It contains advice for the public, health workers, and information on current scams.
The Department of Homeland Security
https://www.dhs.gov/coronavirus - This site contains information regarding the government response and the biodefense strategy.
John Hopkins University
https://coronavirus.jhu.edu/map.html - This is an interactive real-time map that gives updated information on the coronavirus.
https://www.fbi.gov/coronavirus - This is the FBI website. It contains several resources, including a tool for reporting if you are the victim of a scam.
You can stay cyber-safe by not responding to phishing emails. These are emails that pretend to be from reputable sources but are actually thieves trying to steal your information. Do not open attachments in emails from people that you don’t know. There is a chance that you could infect yourself with ransomware. Independently verify that requests for information are legitimate. When in doubt hang up or delete the email and contact the organization directly.
Finally, we must learn to be more cautious and stay safe!
- Michael Martinell, The Broadband Guy