The coronavirus pandemic and the measures to curb it around the world, have led more people to work from home and consequently spending hours online each day and increasingly relying on the internet to access services that were normally obtained offline. This, according to experts, has increased the dangers of cybercrimes during the unprecedented crisis. Even though the cyber-crime have been around for many years, the increase in the percentage of the population connected to the internet and the time spent online, combined with the sense of confinement and the anxiety generated from the lockdown, have provided more opportunities for cybercriminals to take advantage of the situation and make more money or create disruption. According to PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), economic and social disruptions often lead to rising crime and civil unrest, changing human behaviour, new ways of using technology and novel opportunities to do business. In an interview with this paper, Chrisantus Khulabe, Data Analytics and Digital Forensics Manager at PwC East Market Area said, “Many businesses have been forced to transform rapidly to support remote working, which has increased their reliance on hastily deployed Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) and remote administration technologies.” However, he adds, “Some of these VPNs may suffer from overall bandwidth capacity challenges as spikes in the numbers of remote workers occur”. Furthermore, Khulabe pointed out that a rapid transition to remote work puts pressure on IT security teams to understand and address a wave of potential IT-related security risks. “Some organisations have reduced the number of their IT security staff in response to economic challenges, depleting their cyber intelligence and threat monitoring capabilities. Hackers are increasingly targeting business technologies for exploitation and taking advantage of anxiety and change to lure unsuspecting workers using social engineering tactics,” he added. On the other hand, Khulabe explained that, the surge of malicious emails and websites has become pervasive as more people seek information and experience stress that can impede rational thinking, making them highly susceptible targets. “The volume of emails from employers, governments and security and health agencies is rising rapidly, as is the number of phishing emails that resemble legitimate emails.” For instance, he paused to say, “Google recently reported blocking more than 18 million predatory emails every day, as well as 240 million daily spam messages. According to Google, a Multinational Company, common cybercrime techniques, such as phishing, have seen a spike in this disruption era. Phishing is the fraudulent practice of inducing individuals to reveal personal information, such as passwords and credit card numbers through fake websites or emails. Data gathered by Google and analysed by Atlas VPN, a virtual private network (VPN) service provider, is shedding more light on the scope of this. According to the report, in January, Google registered 149k active phishing websites. In February, that number nearly doubled to 293k. In March, though, that number had increased to 522k making it a 350% increase since January. What has led to the increase? According to a new research released last month by the United Nations Interregional Crime and Justice Research Institute, (UNICRI), a sharp surge of fake or inappropriate drugs and medical equipment sold at a very high price to allegedly cure the Coronavirus was recorded on an increasing number of websites well-designed by criminals. Another common scam taking place on the web in this time of lockdown, the survey highlighted, are promises of fake investment opportunities. “The lockdown has significantly increased concerns about vulnerable persons online. While children, for instance, are greatly benefiting from e-schooling, they are equally more exposed to threats coming from the internet, file-sharing abuse, inappropriate content, and the grooming of children for sexual purposes are some of the dangers their parents should be aware of in these challenging times. The elderly, who usually rely on offline shopping and have now to purchase what they need from the internet, equally find themselves more exposed to cybercrime” reads part of the research statement. How do you protect yourself? Although the risk of being attacked will remain, some mitigation measures may help users and employers. For the users, Agnes Mutarutwa, an IT expert said, “It is recommended to be very vigilant about phishing emails and websites, practice good cyber hygiene, use only trusted Wi-Fi networks and consider adopting a password manager to help avoid using the same password for multiple websites.” She added, “It is also important to use double channels of communications with counterparts before transferring sensitive data or downloading a file from an email that may contain malware. Sending an SMS, a WhatsApp message or making a quick call to make sure that the sender is a colleague or friend can prevent a cyber-attack.” Regarding collective conference calls, which are being used more frequently in these times, she said it is important to be mindful of sharing screens or sending screenshots that may contain sensitive information. Besides, “Employers can, among other things, make sure a secure remote access to the organisation’s files is set up, providing the right security capabilities” Mutarutwa asserts.