U.N. Official Warns Cybercrime Up 600% During COVID-19 Pandemic

As the world relies more and more on the internet during the pandemic, crime is increasing online.
Posted at 11:49 AM, May 23, 2020

The United Nations warned on Friday that cybercrime is up 600% during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

U.N. disarmament chief Izumi Nakamitsu says the pandemic has caused an increase of technological innovation. And as the world relies more on the internet, online crime is also rising.

It's estimated there's an attack every 39 seconds. Many have been against health care and medical research facilities. 

Earlier this month, an announcement from U.S. and U.K. officials warned that hackers are targeting organizations with phishing scams to steal usernames and passwords.

Some attacks have been blamed on military intelligence. In March, the U.S. and others blamed Russian agents for cyberattacks against sites in the nation of Georgia. 

In April, the U.N. released data showing that one-third of nations lack laws to protect citizens' online privacy. Nakamitzu said the U.N. is working to combat cybercrime by developing 11 voluntary norms for responsible state behavior related to technology.

Additional reporting by Edith M. Lederer of The Associated Press.