667% spike in email phishing attacks due to coronavirus fears
Amid the coronavirus pandemic, attackers are capitalizing on public fear and taking advantage of heightened emotions by targeting victims in email phishing attacks related to COVID-19. The number of email attacks related to COVID-19 has been increasing since January according to data collected by cybersecurity firm Barracuda Networks. However, the company also reported that recently there has been a huge spike in this kind of attack, stating that there has been a 667% increase since the end of February.
Barracuda reported that between March 1 and March 23, researchers detected over 467,000 spear-phishing email attacks, and over 9,000 of those were related to COVID-19. This represents 2% of all attacks in March so far, whereas in January only 137 COVID-19 related spear-phishing attacks were recorded while February saw 1,188. The threat of cybersecurity risks in COVID-19 topics continues to grow as attackers take advantage of the situation and people seeking information regarding the pandemic.