Cybercriminals are using the worries about the coronavirus epidemic in an effort to maximize the impact of their attacks - intensifying ransomware and DDoS attacks at a time when remote access to computer networks and online services is more vital than ever .
A new document from Europol - based on contributions from Member States and European Union partners - examines how cybercriminals have reacted and evolved since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic and how they seek to exploit the vulnerabilities that have arisen.
He warns that fraudsters are stepping up ransomware attacks, even in a time of international crisis.
"The types of criminals exploiting the COVID-19 pandemic have been active in the field of crime in cyberspace and in the past. "However, some believe that they have intensified their activities and are hiring partners to maximize the impact of their attacks or plans," the report said.
"The pandemic could have a multiplier effect on a successful attack on certain institutions, reinforcing the need for effective cyber-resistance," the report warns.
The Europol report also notes that there has been a small increase in DDoS attacks since the outbreak of the coronavirus - and that these attacks, which burden online services with excessive traffic that will increase in the near future.
Like ransomware attacks, the goal of DDoS attackers is to shut down and with more people than ever working remotely and everyone demanding access to virtual corporate networks, maintaining access is vital to business.
This gives DDoS attackers the opportunity to run blackmailing and critical campaigns. services, in which they can threaten to withdraw electronic services by blocking their traffic from botnets, unless they pay.
Perhaps one of the biggest concerns about DDoS attacks is that they are relatively easy to carry out, even for attackers. low level. Europol describes DDoS as "an affordable type of crime with limited barriers to entry because it is cheap and readily available".
This pandemic is a tremendous opportunity for hackers, but unfortunately it is not the case for humanity. With a huge number of people working from home, often with outdated systems security"Cybercriminals have the opportunity to take advantage of this surreal situation," said Catherine De Bolle of Europol.
To protect people from attacks, the European Union's ENISA service for cyberspace has issued advice for them. employees working remotely in a way that will keep them safe from cyber attacks and hacking.