How did the pirates take advantage of Corona to launch their attacks via the Internet?


Coronavirus (COVID-19) has spread significantly by March 2020, reaching more than 100 countries around the world and officially classified as a global pandemic, and the world is still continuing to fight the unprecedented spread of this virus since its first appearance in China in December 2019.

In addition to its clear implications for the health of individuals and the entire global economy; The spread of the virus has caused sudden and drastic changes in the daily lives of millions of people, as it began to rely on the pattern of study and work from home, and video conferencing applications have become the primary tool for remote communication, but at the same time this massive online shift has exacerbated security concerns

Although the hackers did not invent any new attack schemes exactly Essential, but they have effectively exploited the emergence of the Coronavirus and the shifting work environment to increase their attacks on the Internet unnaturally, so what are the most prominent of these threats?

Perhaps the main change with the spread of the Coronavirus has been the forced shift of the work environment from traditional offices to working from home. A Kaspersky survey in 2020 found that half of the 6,000 respondents did not Previously, they worked from home.

The survey also found that 73% of respondents have not received any IT security education or training from the companies they work for since they moved to work from home, in addition to that; Many companies have not equipped their employees with work devices.

The survey conducted by Kaspersky revealed that 68% of respondents work from home using their personal computers, and are connected through it to the corporate infrastructure, and at the same time They used these devices for entertainment, playing online games and watching movies, which made them more vulnerable to cyber attacks.

All of these factors represented a prominent target for cybercriminals who became more focused on attacking the devices of employees who work from home through penetration. Home Wi-Fi networks to steal users’ data and information, as well as exploit loopholes in their devices to access the digital infrastructure of companies and institutions in which they work.

2- Communication channels are not secure when working remotely:

Of course when working from the office, IT support officials usually take care of securing Internet communication channels and dealing with any digital security threats that appear, but when employees work from home, they set up devices Routing and home networks on their own, namely A practice that increases security risks.

As such, it was found that from March to April 2020 the number of attacks on insecure RDP ports – the most common remote communication protocol in Windows computers – increased tenfold in Russia Seven times as much in the United States.

3- Weaknesses in team cooperation tools:

In the office, employees can edit documents and attend Meetings in person, but after the spread of the Corona virus and the tendency of employees to work from home, the demand for video conferencing applications and group collaboration tools increased greatly and this attracted the attention of hackers.
And then these applications became a target for them, In addition, employees often use personal accounts on free services such as: Google Docs to collaborate with each other, as these services generally lack powerful features that enable them to protect confidential data.

4 – Targeting health care services:

With the spread of the Corona virus, the health care sector has become a major target for hackers, as denial of service attacks have grown significantly during 2020 and it has been one of the most prominent targets. For example, in February and March, the US Department of Health and Human Services, a group of hospitals in Paris, and one of the largest blood testing centers in the Czech Republic.

5- Phishing attacks that exploit Coronavirus:

While governments around the world were combating the spread of the Corona virus and developing measures to support companies and citizens, cybercriminals tried to take advantage of the fear of the virus and the need for people to help Hackers took advantage of this matter To send malicious emails about coronavirus-related topics.

For example, the hacker sent fake emails pretending to be from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) where victims were asked to fill out case forms Recent infection with the Coronavirus among their neighbors through URL links in these messages to visit websites that contain forms asking them to enter their email address and password.

6- Fictitious payments:

According to a recent report, hackers sent five times the number of malicious emails in 2020 compared to In 2019, to attract victims about the benefits of social care, as cyber criminals benefited from the real news related to the granting of grants by Facebook to small companies, and they cited this matter and announced that the payments are due to all Facebook users.

Accordingly, they asked the victims to come forward. For this grant by providing their account username and password, address, Social Security number, and a copy of their identity document.

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