They are emails that mention your employees by name.

They appear to come from familiar companies – Apple, Amazon, Visa.

They offer to help work through an issue so they won’t have to be inconvenienced – all they need is confirmation of some basic information.

And all it takes is one click on the wrong link to bring down your systems.

Stop Successful Phishing Attacks: Sign Up to Receive Our New eBook

We had hoped COVID-19 would be over by now, or at least under control. But since we’re still dealing with it in 2021, it means we’ll likely also be dealing with a different type of case spike – phishing emails.

Back in March, The U.S. Health and Human Services observed an unusual spike in traffic to their servers. US officials believe the attack, which hit HHS's systems millions of times, had been designed to frustrate the health agency's response to the coronavirus outbreak. They still don’t know who did it. But it illustrates one reason why these attacks are on the rise – when critical healthcare systems are threatened during a global pandemic, it raises the stakes precipitously.

Similar attacks are happening to cities and states in the U.S. and in nations around the world.  

Municipalities that have upgraded cyber defenses will be able to repel most attacks. But as yet there is no impenetrable defense against someone clicking on an email that results in devices being infected.

The pandemic has presented hackers with new angles to exploit that may catch an already busy employee off-guard. Those familiar with scams about risks to bank accounts might be more susceptible to an email requesting login confirmation regarding health insurance or vaccination appointments.

Still, the same basic steps to protect yourself and your employees still apply when it comes to dealing with suspicious emails: Question anything that comes from an unknown source; be wary of emails with spelling and grammar errors; don’t overreact to message that indicate an urgent response is required immediately. All of these are potential warning signs.

Our New eBook

We are creating an eBook with more tips and strategies on how to protect yourself from scams during the pandemic and beyond. Find out more here

Related Resources:

360Civic Publishes Free Whitepaper on Ransomware Protection

Ransomware Scares In Alaska and Atlanta: How to Protect Yourself

Ron Zayas

CEO & Chief Strategist

Ron brings decades of expertise in marketing, advertising and e-commerce strategies to 360Civic. There is not one aspect of any client project that is not enhanced through his experience, insight, and... Read more

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