2 min read

Department of Justice goes after scammers exploiting Coronavirus pandemic

Alina BÎZGĂ

April 02, 2020

Ad One product to protect all your devices, without slowing them down.
Free 90-day trial
Department of Justice goes after scammers exploiting Coronavirus pandemic

Due to the troublesome spread of coronavirus-themed scams and malware attacks, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) launched a nationwide campaign to detect, inhibit and punish any fraudulent or malicious online activity.

“It is essential that the Department of Justice remain vigilant in detecting, investigating, and prosecuting wrongdoing related to the crisis,” said U.S. Attorney General William Barr in the Memorandum sent out to attorney offices across the nation.

Later adding that “there have been reports of individuals and businesses selling fake cures for COVID-19 online and engaging in other forms of fraud, reports of phishing emails from entities posing as the World Health Organization or the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and reports of malware being inserted onto mobile apps designed to track the spread of the virus.”

As consequence, the DOJ released its first enforcement action against a fraudulent website, named “coronavirusmedicalkit.com”. The operators of the domain apparently claimed to be offering vaccine kits approved by the World Health Organization for a mere shipping fee of $4.95, paid online via credit card.

As we all know, no vaccines against the virus have been approved for public use, and a temporary restraining order was filed against the website, pending further investigation.

The website was apparently not just promoting a fake product. The criminals were actually after the credit card and other personal information consumers provide when ordering the kit. With the data gathered, fraudsters could easily engage in other unlawful schemes such as credit card fraud and identity theft.

Following the complaint filed by the District Court of Austin Texas, the website is no longer available for the public.

“We therefore moved very quickly to shut down this scam. We hope in the future that responsible web domain registrars will quickly and effectively shut down websites designed to facilitate these scams,” said U.S. Attorney John F. Bash of the Western District of Texas.

The DOJ also advises consumers to be vigilant and follow protective measures to fend off any fraudulent attempts:

• Verify the authenticity of any company, charity or person contacting you with COVID-19-related content
• Watch out for websites or email addresses impersonating legitimate authorities such as the WHO and the CDC
• Delete unsolicited emails that address coronavirus treatments, vaccines or supplies
• Do not provide any personal information to people contacting you via SMS or social media posts in return for monetary aid or other goods
• Do not access email attachments from unverified sources. Authorities do not provide updates and information regarding the development of the pandemic via email to the public
• Install a local security solution that is up to date

Here at Bitdefender we focus on keeping your devices protected from malicious activity and threats of all kinds. Now more than ever, you need autonomy and safety as you reach the world via your internet-enabled devices. That”s why we have extended the trial for our best security suite, ensuring that you can take care of your family”s devices for up to 90 days. If you”re already set up, why not make an unexpected gift to your loved ones who might not be aware of emerging cyber threats?

Stay Safe!

tags


Author



Right now

Top posts

Identifying and Dealing with Online Bullying Is Not Impossible - School Presentation Inside

Identifying and Dealing with Online Bullying Is Not Impossible - School Presentation Inside

June 28, 2022

2 min read
Let’s Celebrate World Social Media Day by Improving Your Privacy and Security Online

Let’s Celebrate World Social Media Day by Improving Your Privacy and Security Online

June 28, 2022

3 min read
Bitdefender Reveals the Top Cyber Threats Faced by Consumers in 2021

Bitdefender Reveals the Top Cyber Threats Faced by Consumers in 2021

June 22, 2022

1 min read
Scam alert: Cybercrooks use shady investment domain to scam keen investors out of money and data

Scam alert: Cybercrooks use shady investment domain to scam keen investors out of money and data

May 24, 2022

3 min read
John Oliver Shows the Dark Side of Data Brokerage on Last Week Tonight

John Oliver Shows the Dark Side of Data Brokerage on Last Week Tonight

April 15, 2022

3 min read
Bitdefender Labs Warns of Phishing Scams Targeting MetaMask Users

Bitdefender Labs Warns of Phishing Scams Targeting MetaMask Users

April 14, 2022

3 min read

FOLLOW US ON

SOCIAL MEDIA


You might also like

Israeli Authorities Seized Severs of Breached Company for Not Cooperating Israeli Authorities Seized Severs of Breached Company for Not Cooperating
Silviu STAHIE

July 04, 2022

1 min read
FTC warns LGBTQ+ community of extortion scams targeting them on dating apps FTC warns LGBTQ+ community of extortion scams targeting them on dating apps
Graham CLULEY

July 01, 2022

2 min read
OpenSea Breach Exposes 1.8 Million Email Addresses. How does it affect you? OpenSea Breach Exposes 1.8 Million Email Addresses. How does it affect you?
Radu CRAHMALIUC

June 30, 2022

3 min read