Cyber Criminals Proceed to Profit from COVID-19

Cyber Criminals Continue to Benefit from COVID-19

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

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

San Jose, Calif., Jan. 13, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — In line 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 take advantage of customers’ fears and want for solutions across the virus, from malware which permits cyber attackers to learn bank card knowledge to vaccine based mostly scams focusing on the aged as a way to acquire entry to private cost knowledge. General, cyber-attacks elevated by 15% worldwide in comparison with 2019. Additional the speed of scams total rose and fell on the identical fee and time because the virus appeared internationally.  

“For a few years, authors of malware have been utilizing psychological tips to lure unsuspecting customers,” mentioned Alexander Vukcevic, Director of Avira Safety Labs. “At the moment, we’re in a scenario the place many individuals are on the lookout for solutions and are anxious 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 commonly distributed below the title “Corona-Apps.apk” by way of phishing campaigns. The key phrase “Corona” is meant to entice Android customers to put in the Trojan on their smartphone. 

In line with the Avira report, the variety of Android banking Trojans detected in 2020 elevated by 35 proportion factors in comparison with the earlier 12 months, which is due partially to elevated cellular banking actions this 12 months. 

“Banking Trojans have all the time performed an vital position within the Android malware scene and this 12 months they had an excellent larger presence. Along with the technique of utilizing COVID-19 as a canopy, additionally they use the traditional strategy: they disguise themselves as a broadly used app and ask for uncommon permissions as a way to acquire bank card knowledge, for instance,” Vukcevic mentioned. 


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. 

Curiously, the variety of all cyber-attacks blocked by Avira elevated this 12 months at the identical fee 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 seem like a direct correlation between the variety of assaults and the variety of folks working from residence, this can be all the way down to cybercriminals realizing that individuals are typically extra weak to sure varieties of assaults when away from a safe workplace setting. 

Rising risk in 2021: Stalkerware  

One other malware that actively camouflages itself and, in accordance with Avira, will develop into more and more vital within the coming 12 months is stalkerware. Apps which might be detected as stalkerware are a kind of spyware and adware that may endanger the privateness of customers and the safety of the system. These spy apps might be put in with out the data or consent of the gadget proprietor, to secretly monitor them and spy on private info similar to footage, movies, messages and placement knowledge. To disguise their actions, they use a stealth mode that permits the app to run invisibly within the background. 

Because of the growing exercise of stalkerware apps within the Android setting, Avira is an energetic 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 out there right here: 

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



About Avira 

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