- July 7, 2020
- Posted by: IBA LLP
- Category: Articles, Regulatory
In the wake of a potential cyber offensive attack from the Chinese army, Computer Emergency Response Team-India(CERT-In) setup by Ministry of Home Affairs has issued an advisory warning in public interest dated 21st June 2020. The notification states that in the guise of a Free Covid-19Test, Chinese cyber warriors could be carrying out a massive phishing attack from email IDs like *firstname.lastname@example.org*. Malicious Phishing E-mails/ SMS/Messages on Social Media should be watched out for which incite people to provide personal and financial information.
Please find below some key pointers to be noted on the malicious emails, messages etc:
- Phishing campaign is expected to impersonate government agencies, departments and trade associations who have been tasked to oversee the disbursement of the government fiscal aid.
- Spoofed email ID which could be used for the phishing email is expected to be email@example.com.
- Phishing E-mail Subject Line could be: Free Covid-19 testing for all residents of Delhi, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Chennai and Ahmedabad.
- The malicious group claims to have 2 million individual email addresses and the attack campaign is expected to start on June 21.
Preventive Measures to be adopted are mentioned below:
- Don’t open or click on attachment in unsolicited e-mail, SMS or messages through social media.
- Exercise extra caution to be taken in opening attachments, even if the sender appears to be known.
- Beware of e-mail addresses, spelling errors in e-mails, websites and unfamiliar e-mail senders.
- Do not submit personal financial details on unfamiliar or unknown websites / links.
- Beware of e-mails, links providing special offers like Covid-19 testing, aid, winning prize, rewards, cashback offers.
- Check the integrity of URLs before providing login credentials or clicking a link.
- Consider using safe browsing tools, filtering tools (antivirus and content-based filtering) in your antivirus, firewall, and filtering services. Update spam filters with latest spam mail contents.
- Leverage pretty good privacy in mail communications. Additionally, advise the users to encrypt / protect the sensitive documents stored in the internet facing machines to avoid potential leakage.
- Any unusual activity or attack should be reported immediately at firstname.lastname@example.org with the relevant logs, email headers for the analysis of the attacks and taking further appropriate actions
It has been requested in the notification to educate/ spread awareness amongst all force personnel and family members aswell regularly/ daily on the above-mentioned points and preventive measures.
Author: Nidhi Singh