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Home People Opinion During the COVID-19 pandemic, cyber-crime has grown in strength

During the COVID-19 pandemic, cyber-crime has grown in strength

Tonya Ugoretz (FBI Deputy Assistant Director for Cybercrime) says why the number of crimes on the internet has more than tripled.

FBI report

Speaking in a panel discussion led by “Think Tank” in Aspen, FBI cyber crime specialist Tonya reveals that the number of cyber crime reports has more than tripled during the pandemic. She also says they usually received about 1000 complaints a day through their portal, now they receive between 3000 and even 4000 complaints a day.

The agent shares with us that “There was a short moment when we hoped […] that these damn cyber criminals were creatures too, that they might have thought that targeting a pandemic and getting out of it was too much. Unfortunately, it was not so.

Cybercrime spreads like a virus

In Darknet, where you pay by crypto, prohibitions for users using the coronavirus as a marketing tool are constantly appearing. Nevertheless, attacking hospitals with ransomware has intensified, blocking their access to the system and then sending a ransom demand for recovery. Darknet is full of mask offers and dishonest medicines for COVID-19.

cyber crime growth during covid19 pandemic

There have also been several cases of selling the virus itself. Fortunately, this is such a sensitive topic that such auctions are almost automatically removed by site administrators from this anonymous network filled with illegal bids.

Tonya Ugoretz, speaks on this: “We’ve seen people set up fake COVID charities, promise to supply masks and other equipment and then deliver fraudulent loans, extortion, etc… Actually, anything you can think of to exploit the pandemic, cybercriminals do it”.

What now?

Many people in the world, due to pandemics, have started to work from home and naturally spend more time online, making them more vulnerable to various types of cyber attacks. People’s fear and anxiety make some of them think unreasonably and are an easy target for cyber criminals. Our fear becomes their business opportunity.

Offers range from Netflix subscriptions to the sale of the Unity Statue in India, which is 182 meters high. Yes, you get it right. The statue is almost twice as tall as the Statue of Liberty in New York. The fraudster wanted $4 billion, claiming the money would help the government finance the fight against the coronavirus.

statue of unity was on the black market auction for 4b dollars

Statue of Unity – a monument to Vallabhbhai Patel, Deputy Prime Minister of India on Sadhu Island

Tim Draper, an American investor and founder of Draper Fisher Jurvetson, believes that – the fiat currencies are already highly obsolete and will be out of circulation in five years. They will be replaced by commonly used cryptocurrency. Popular fiats will remain on the market, but only criminals on the black market will use them. This shows that the black market like darknet will weaken with the spread of crypto. 

In these difficult times, we have to take care of both physical and network security. Fraudsters, take every possible opportunity, let’s keep that in mind. At the same time, let’s be careful and not get crazy.

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