COVID-19 Fraudsters Sending Fake Alerts Causing Panic and “Disinformation”

Fake phishing emails and other notifications resulting in public panic. People at risk of compromising personal and financial information.

Image credit: KMBC Kansas City
Image credit: KMBC Kansas City

So we were thinking COVID-19 is our worst enemy and as we fight to slow the spread of the deadly virus, Canada’s Foreign Signals Intelligence Agency (FSIA) is preparing to fight a whole another battle and possibly worse than COVID-19.


Thousands of fraudulent websites have been emerging and spoofing the Public Health Agency of Canada, country’s revenue and border services, have been taken down. – Said the Communications Security Establishment.

They also said – “We’ve taken down some COVID-related fake sites out there. We work with partners to do that type of thing. We’re taking action,” Scott Jones, head of the CSE’s Canadian Centre for Cyber Security, told CBC News in an interview.

In one of the scams that was tracked and reported by the authorities, fraudsters have posted under the name of the Public Health Agency, telling Canadians that they have been tested “positive” and asked the public to submit their payment information for prescription purposes.

Authorities state that criminals and state actors are trying to exploit the global anxiety over the ongoing pandemic.

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According to the reports, swindlers have tried extraordinary phishing attempts by posting magical cures to the novel coronavirus.

It has gone as far as scammers maliciously selling fake lists of infected people in the neighbourhood causing panic and urgency to act on the issue.

This is resulting in many people compromising their credit card and personal information.

Warning from the Chief of Defence:

General Jonathan Vance, Canada’s Chief of Defence, said he has recently witnessed Canada’s adversaries are intending to exploit the already existing anxiety about the COVID-19.

Stated in an article by CBC News, “There is absolutely going to be efforts on the part of state-sponsored and non-state-sponsored [actors] to try to make every step we take as a government, and indeed as allies, look bad,” Vance told CBC News earlier this month.

The authorities have requested organizations connected to COVID-19 to increase their monitoring and spread employee and public awareness on “phishing”.

Also requested to update in the informational systems to ensure transparent and authentic communications.