Google Releases Security Measures To Help Users Fight COVID-19 Scams

Right after spotting the first coronavirus-related spam, Google has been pretty active in blocking further malware and phishing emails on a daily basis. But as the company cannot fight alone, therefore upon revealing the online threats from government-backed hackers, they have also issued security tips with which users can save themselves from COVID-19 scams.

Unfortunately, while the world is already on the verge of being wiped over, hackers still are finding the situation as an opportunity to fool users. These attackers are either impersonating charity organizations or even in worst-case scenarios some of them also claim to be working for reputable NGOs. Moreover, when that isn’t enough, there are also now websites on the internet that behave that are misleading the people browsing as official government and public health agency pages.

While a common estimation of the result would make anyone think that together these strategies can work as best to fool people into clicking on malware links or get involved in scams, but surprisingly Google’s reports suggest that there hasn’t been any significant increase in the phishing activities by the state-backed groups. It seems like they are only revamping the tactics that have resulted in a slight decline in Google warnings during the month of March when compared to the last two months.

To be precise, Google’s threat analysis group has caught 12+ government-backed hacking groups that have been active with COVID-19 themes for phishing activities.

In fact, going into further depth, the company also shared details regarding one notable campaign which was targeted at phishing the personal accounts of US government employees by impersonating the names of American fast-food franchises and COVID-19 messages as well. Some of the messages sent had the offer of free meals and coupons inside as a gift for such users due to the ongoing COVID-19, while others were leading recipients to sites that were being disguised as options for online ordering and delivery.

As soon as people got happy to click on the emails, next came the phishing pages that were asking for Google account credentials.

However, just before any user’s private information could have been compromised, Google activated its defense system to filter all such messages as spam and for the ones who have access to Safe Browsing, Google was also warning the Gmail users before they could click the link.

Overall, the search engine giant has identified 18 million malware and phishing Gmail messages every day but at the same time, the company also says that no account has been compromised to date.

Furthermore, Google is also proactively working on introducing extra security precautions such as more intense thresholds for Google Account sign in and recovery, especially for the 50,000 accounts that are facing such high-risk.

Google has also released security tips that can easily help you combat the on-going COVID-19 related scams. The company has clearly mentioned all types of scams that can possibly be tried upon you and those majorly include websites selling fake products or making fake financial offers to attract you.

Here is the infographic version of the scam guidelines:

Read next: Google Is Adding A Feature To Search Which Will Notify Users When It Thinks The Results Might Not Match Well With The Query
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