Tuesday , September 22 2020
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New world. Cyber ​​crooks ride the coronavirus wave

Faced with this surge of cyber threats, hyper caution is in order. (PHILIPPE HUGUEN / AFP)

Five times more cyber attacks than usual, according to antivirus software publisher Bitdefender, three times more email scams using the words “covid-19” and “coronavirus” in the past week, according to Sophos … Cybersecurity specialists are unanimous: cyber crooks are having a great time and gleefully surfing on the interest of users for the coronavirus epidemic, which encourages them to rush headlong into the first email or the first site to talk about it.

There are many phishing attacks (phishing attacks) in particular: hackers pose as doctors, for the WHO (World Health Organization), NATO, Unicef ​​or even the French government; and they send messages prompting to download documents (for example, travel certificates in PDF format). In reality, these are trapped documents which can introduce malicious software which can then be used to recover confidential information such as passwords or ransomware.

Other scams are simply aimed at extracting money. For example, a pay video purporting to provide “military information on the best way to survive the Coronavirus”. We also see the flowering of false chloroquine sales sites or false calls for donations (in bitcoins) for humanitarian organizations, with beautiful official logos that are completely false.

Faced with this surge of cyber threats, hyper caution is in order. The telework boom doesn't help. Some people connect to business applications from their personal computers which are not necessarily well protected or which can be shared with other family members. Advice on teleworking can be found on the government website Cybermalveillance.gouv.fr.

Some advise people having voice conversations at home on confidential files, such as lawyers, to disconnect their connected speakers (publication in English) or to configure them so as to avoid the feedback of information. Indeed, we now know that untimely triggering of connected assistants can lead to the sending of fractions of conversations to technical services responsible for analyzing the operation of the devices.

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