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Fraud victims have lost more than £4.6m to coronavirus-related scams during the lockdown – ThreatLabZ from Zscaler

June 2020 by Zscaler

In recent figures released by ActionFraud, it is believed that more than 2,000 victims lost cash through fake online goods sales, bogus cold-calls, non-existent pension plans and other frauds. Another 11,206 people claim to have been victims of email (phishing) and text (smishing) attempts to trick them into giving out personal details.

Since January, the Zscaler ThreaLabZ team have seen an increase of 30,000% in phishing, malicious websites, and malware targeting remote users—all related to COVID-19. At the start of this year, they saw (and blocked) 1,200 such attacks. And how many did they see in March? 380,000!

As discussed recently, bad actors love to take advantage of major news and events, popular brands, the hottest games—anything trending around the world—to give their malware a better chance of success. And, sadly, they are not above preying on peoples’ fears and uncertainty, which explains the explosion in attacks and scams related to COVID-19. In this blog, the ThreatLabZ team take a further look at some of the ways cybercriminals have been adjusting their campaigns to take advantage of the pandemic.

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