Cyber Criminals Proceed to Profit from COVID-19

Cyber Criminals Continue to Benefit from COVID-19

This graph reveals Android banking trojan detections elevated by 35 proportion level from 2019 to 2020.

This comparative timeline reveals the variety of prevented assaults globally in 2019 vs 2020.

San Jose, Calif., Jan. 13, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — In accordance with Avira’s 2020 Report on Cybersecurity, cyber criminals benefited drastically from COVID-19. With a world longing for info, malware authors developed all kinds of methods to use customers’ fears and wish for solutions across the virus, from malware which permits cyber attackers to learn bank card knowledge to vaccine based mostly scams concentrating on the aged as a way to achieve entry to private fee knowledge. General, cyber-attacks elevated by 15% worldwide in comparison with 2019. Additional the speed of scams general rose and fell on the identical price and time because the virus appeared internationally.  

“For a few years, authors of malware have been utilizing psychological methods to lure unsuspecting customers,” stated Alexander Vukcevic, Director of Avira Safety Labs. “At present, we’re in a scenario the place many individuals are in search of solutions and are frightened due to COVID-19. The authors of malware are particularly exploiting this uncertainty.” 

 Because the starting of the pandemic, particular variants of well-known malware households have emerged to entice unsuspecting customers with the catchphrase “Corona” or “COVID-19”. 


Banking Trojan “Cerberus” lures with “Corona  

One instance of this is a variant of the Android banking Trojan “Cerberus”, which is usually distributed beneath the identify “Corona-Apps.apk” through phishing campaigns. The key phrase “Corona” is meant to entice Android customers to put in the Trojan on their smartphone. 

In accordance with the Avira report, the variety of Android banking Trojans detected in 2020 elevated by 35 proportion factors in comparison with the earlier yr, which is due partially to elevated cell banking actions this yr. 

“Banking Trojans have at all times performed an essential position within the Android malware scene and this yr they had a good larger presence. Along with the technique of utilizing COVID-19 as a canopy, in addition they use the traditional method: they disguise themselves as a extensively used app and ask for uncommon permissions as a way to receive bank card knowledge, for instance,” Vukcevic stated. 


COVID-19 as a driver for cyber assaults 

General, Avira Safety Labs recorded a rise in malware assaults of round 15% in comparison with 2019 with a big enhance significantly within the first and final months of 2020. 

Apparently, the variety of all cyber-attacks blocked by Avira elevated this yr at the identical price because the pandemic unfold. Throughout the primary wave of the pandemic in April, the variety of malware assaults additionally reached its first peak. As the size of the pandemic diminished in the summertime, so did the variety of assaults. Because the starting of the second wave in October, the variety of malware assaults has been rising quickly once more. There would look like a direct correlation between the variety of assaults and the variety of individuals working from residence, this can be right down to cybercriminals understanding that individuals are typically extra susceptible to sure varieties of assaults when away from a safe workplace atmosphere. 

Growing risk in 2021: Stalkerware  

One other malware that actively camouflages itself and, in keeping with Avira, will develop into more and more essential within the coming yr is stalkerware. Apps which can be detected as stalkerware are a sort of spy ware that may endanger the privateness of customers and the safety of the system. These spy apps could be put in with out the data or consent of the system proprietor, to secretly monitor them and spy on private info similar to photos, movies, messages and site knowledge. To disguise their actions, they use a stealth mode that permits the app to run invisibly within the background. 

Because of the rising exercise of stalkerware apps within the Android atmosphere, Avira is an lively member in the Coalition Towards Stalkerware to assist their combat towards this risk. 

Extra info and an evaluation of a typical stalkerware app is out there on this weblog article. 


The Avira Annual Menace Report 2020 is offered right here: 

Extra info and ideas for secure on-line banking and buying can be found on the following hyperlink: 



About Avira 

Avira supplies a consumer-focused portfolio of safety and privateness options for Home windows, Mac, Android and iOS, residence networks, and sensible gadgets (IoT). All Avira options can be found as licensed SDKs and APIs. Working collectively, Avira and its companions defend greater than 500 million gadgets globally. Avira options constantly obtain best-in-class outcomes from impartial safety assessments.  

Avira is headquartered close to Lake Constance, Germany, with extra places of work within the EU, the USA, and Asia. For extra details about Avira go to 

James Griffiths
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