Fraudsters target governments with a vaccine scam - Interpol

Organized crime groups attempt to defraud governments, offering fake COVID-19 vaccine deals, Interpol warned on Monday.

The warning was issued after at least 60 cases in 40 countries globally were identified where individuals in the health system received offers to purchase vaccines.

Threat actors pretend to represent a vaccine manufacturer or a government agency facilitating the distribution of vaccines.

According to a press release from Interpol, scammers target professional and personal email accounts of potential buyers.

Legitimate vaccine manufacturers informed Interpol that fraudsters also use fake social media accounts and websites to disguise as vaccine producers.

"As we see with cybercrime, usually it is the private sector which has the most information about attacks and trends, which is exactly what has happened with these attempted vaccine scams," - INTERPOL Secretary General Jürgen Stock is quoted in the press release.

The agency encouraged agencies and businesses to inform the police even when targeted organizations managed to avoid being scammed.

The coronavirus pandemic has launched a wave of cybercrime targeted towards healthcare institutions and hospitals.

Health systems in Ireland and New Zealand fell victim to ransomware attacks and leaks. Threat actors also launched numerous phishing attacks against people seeking to get a coronavirus vaccine.

According to Webroot, a cybersecurity company, there has been a 336% increase in phishing domains targeted at people searching for inoculation.

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