© 2019 - International Centre for Investigative Reporting
FG warns against existence of Coronavirus Ransomware
THE Federal Government has warned Nigerians to be mindful of the existence of an Android-based malicious and fraudulent coronavirus ransomware application.
Lai Mohammed, Minister of Information and Culture, disclosed that the application claims to provide updates on the COVID-19 virus and infections near the users.
According to the minister, the ransomware blocks access to users’ personal data, and accounts and threatens to delete, except users pay $100 in Bitcoin within 48 hours.
In a statement signed by Segun Adeyemi, Special Assistant to the President, Office of the Minister of Information and Culture in Abuja, “the ransomware App, detected on the website http://www.coronavirusapp.site/, prompts users to download an Android App purportedly for coronavirus map tracking and heat map visuals.”
Website browser adopted by The ICIR to verify the website also issued a ‘dangerous’ warning, advising that the website contains a malware.
However, Mohammed noted that the developmentwas a confirmation of warnings against cybercriminals, seeking to exploit the growing spread of the virus for nefarious gains.
He, therefore, called on the general public not to download the ransomware App and to seek updates on the pandemic only from the appropriate authorities.
Nigeria, like every other nation globally, has been under threat due to the COVID-19 pandemic which currently has no cure.
So far, 42 cases have been officially announced by the Nigeria Centre or Disease Control (NCC). 39 active cases, two cases discharged and one death.