Hackers are actively targeting WHO amid Coronavirus pandemic

From phishing, malware and ransomware to identity theft; hackers are actively targeting WHO amid Coronavirus pandemic.


As much as we resent it, it is a fact that cybercriminals have diverted all their energies and efforts in sabotaging all kinds of virtual efforts to help the public in dealing with the Coronavirus or COVID-19 pandemic.

Earlier we saw fake Coronavirus tracker app infecting devices with CovidLoack ransomware while a fake website was also found dropping malware disguising as WiseCleaner software.

Now it is confirmed by Reuters that the World Health Organization (WHO) has also become a highly preferred target of hackers.

According to Flavio Aggio, the chief information security officer at the WHO, a yet unidentified group of hackers have tried to breach the security of WHO.

However, this isn’t a one-time attack since the organization has observed an unprecedented increment in the frequency of cyberattacks against WHO since the onset of the coronavirus crisis.  

“There has been a big increase in targeting of the WHO and other cybersecurity incidents…There are no hard numbers, but such compromise attempts against us and the use of impersonations to target others have more than doubled,” stated Aggio.

Previously, hackers used the WHO’s name to steal sensitive user information and money. The latest cyberattack against WHO was identified by a Blackstone Law Group lawyer and cybersecurity expert Alexander Urbelis on March 13. As per his analysis, the hackers uploaded an unauthentic and malware-infected website under the guise of the WHO’s email system to attack the organization and steal passwords or login data from its employees.

Although the actual perpetrators of the crime haven’t been identified yet, it is speculated that the “DarkHotel” hacking group could be responsible for the attack. 

It is worth noting that many healthcare organizations are currently under the radar of cybercriminals and the recent surge in attacks against the WHO could very well be part of a bigger and widespread operation. Such as, the US Health and Human Services Department (HHS) and Coronavirus testing facility in the Czech Republic were also hit by massive cyber attacks.

It seems as if the cybercriminals want to hurt the healthcare organizations’ ability to deal with the coronavirus crisis. Therefore, if you would like to research the ongoing pandemic or like to keep an eye on which country has been infected and which not, follow Bing COVID TrackerNcov2019.live or Johns Hopkins University’s live map for Coronavirus outbreak.

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