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This Coronavirus Tracking App Is Ransomware (Here’s the Password You Need)

image of the Android ransomware app in question.

Scammers don’t take days off, especially when there’s a global crisis going on. If you’ve recently heard of an official coronavirus tracking app becoming available to the public, don’t download it: it’s a prime case of ransomware.

Given the continuous development of the coronavirus outbreak around the world people are on high alert and anxious for any information they can get.

And that’s exactly how the new tracking app titled CovidLock has been able to sneak past people’s defenses. The malicious software is advertised as a reliable tool to keep track of the confirmed cases around the user’s area, offering an interactive map and several related counters that show “official” numbers as reported by the World Health Organization and other sources. None of that is true.

Once users are lured in to download the app, it performs a lock-screen attack where victims are forced to change their lock-screen passwords before they’re denied access to their phones. At that point, the unlucky users are given 48 hours to pay a $100 ransom in Bitcoin to get the password needed to regain access to their own phones. If ignored, the malware threatens to wipe the phone’s memory clean and leak the user’s social media accounts online.

Luckily for us, a fast-acting Reddit user has once again come to the rescue. Without even installing the app, one user, known as ‘luca020400’, reported (with proof) he was able to decompile it and managed to find the specific password the victims need to unlock their screens and regain access to their phones.

In case you need it, the verified password is 4865083501.

This is just one of the multiple apps and websites that are going around scamming people in these vulnerable times. Some of them are spread around social media groups and others are sent straight to your inbox.

According to DomainTools’ researchers, over the past few weeks, there has been a spike in the number of domain names related to the coronavirus outbreak and many of them have identified as scams.

That’s why it’s always important to double-check your sources. If you’re looking for reliable websites to get all the latest updates about the current pandemic, check out these official dashboards and webpages that can keep you well informed and hopefully make you feel less afraid.

[via SC Media]

Carla Cometto Carla Cometto
Carla has been writing professionally for five years and blogging for many more. She's worked as a journalist, photographer, and translator. She's also an avid traveler who hopes to inspire a sense of curiosity and adventure in others through her writing. Read Full Bio »
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