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Criminals Target Online Shoppers Amid Pandemic, According to Europol

The Europe’s policing agency (Europol) reported that criminals are targeting the online shoppers amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The agency reported that the cases of online shopping fraud sparked a sharp increase during the coronavirus pandemic. The group reported that the scammers are victimizing individuals working from home.

Europol explained in its annual cybercrime report that the fear of acquiring the respiratory disease causes a massive increase in online shipping. A lot of people prefer to shop online rather than visiting malls personally.

Online Shoppers

However, the surge in online shopping resulted into a major rise in delivery fraud in the second year of the pandemic, according to the agency. Criminals find it as an opportunity to perform their illegal activities online.

“The extension of lockdowns throughout Europe has brought with it a number of new e-commerce opportunities, which have often proven to be a target for criminals, Criminals offer goods and receive payment without delivery, defraud online shops with weak security measures, or use delivery services as phishing lures,” Europo said.

The Hague-based agency reported that the criminal gangs were pretending as delivery services offering information about a parcel with the aim to obtain the victim’s account and credit card details.

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Online Shoppers

Suspects usually target mobile phone users by sending messages via SMS, which is called as “smishing”.

The department said that the dark web’s most popular form of payment for illegal goods and services are Bitcoin and Monero.

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