Criminals are using the COVID-19 pandemic to prey on Canadians. The Communications Security Establishment has discovered more than 1,000 malicious websites that either scam or provide misinformation on COVID-19 programs. 

The intelligence agency says in the last two months cybercriminals have set up more than 1,000 fake Canada Revenue Agency and Canada Emergency Response Benefit websites. The agency says they are trying to take these sites down as they are convincing copies of federal government websites and are meant to trick people into giving personal financial information which they could then use.

Phishing attempts are also prevalent with government organizations being spoofed by criminals pretending to be officials with Public Health, or trying to get donations by asking the receiver to click links that will then download malware software that can steal information from your computer.  The CSE also says they have seen two phishing attacks targeting Canadian researchers studying COVID-19.  Both of those attacks were in April.

The CSE says because of public health measures and travel restrictions it is seeing an uptick in online crime.