COVID-19 Fallout: Sharp Increase In Cybercrime, UN Expert

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United Nations: While the world was busy coping with the scrouge of the coronavirus pandemic, cybercrime was taking a toll on the virtual world. The increase in internet usage during the pandemic further compounded the problem.

UN counterterrorism chief, Vladimir Voronkov told the UN Security Council on Thursday that a 350% increase in phishing websites was reported in the first quarter of the year, many targeting hospitals and health care systems and hindering their work during COVID-19 pandemic, Zee News reported.

The upsurge in phishing sites was part of “a significant rise in cybercrime in recent months” reported by speakers at last month’s first Virtual Counterterrorism Week at the United Nations, he said in the report.

“We know that terrorists are exploiting the significant disruption and economic hardships caused by COVID-19 to spread fear, hate and division and radicalise and recruit new followers,” Voronkov said in the report, adding that the UN and global experts don’t yet fully understand “the impact and consequences of the pandemic on global peace and security, and more specifically on organised crime and terrorism.”

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