COVID-19 and Cybersecurity
As the BYU community works together (at a distance) to combat the spread of the coronavirus, the Office of Information Security is dedicated to combating the spread of cyber threats.
Information about campus closures, previously scheduled events, health and safety, and more
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Our regularly-updated compilation of prevalent or dangerous scams and phishing attempts occurring in response to COVID-19
Cybercriminals are spreading links to malicious sites disguised as reliable COVID-19 maps such as the one at Johns Hopkins University to infect computers with malware. Links to these sites are being circulated either on social media or through misleading emails. Please validate links connect to real maps and resources.
The FBI warns of a fraud scheme messaging the promise of money, i.e., “stimulus check” from a retailer such as Costco, and providing a link that contains malware, ransomware or other fraudulent methods to steal identity, financial or other personal information.
Government relief checks are heading to every American taxpayer, and criminals want to get in on the action. Tips to remember:
- You don’t need to do anything.
- Do not give anyone your personal information to “sign-up” for your relief check.
- To set up direct deposit of your check, communicate only with the IRS at irs.gov/coronavirus.
- No one has early access to this money. Anyone that claims to is a scammer.
Fraudulent emails have been in use for years, but the coronavirus gives scammers an opportunity to prey on public fear. The FTC has found cases of phishing emails claiming to be from relevant and authoritative organizations such as the WHO or the CDC. If you receive messages like these:
- Try to ascertain the sender without clicking on any links, buttons, or attachments (hover over links to see their actual destination appear in the corner of your browser)
- Be wary of any and all requests for information, threats, or special promises
- Report the message to BYU
Misinformation and Rumors
Scammers, and sometimes well-meaning people, share information that hasn’t been verified. Before you pass on any messages, and certainly before you pay someone or share your personal information, do some fact checking by contacting trusted sources.