The Pandemic is Seeing Fraudsters Capitalise on Taking Advantage of Vulnerable Victims

By Guest Author | cybersecurity | January 18, 2022

In today’s digital economy, almost anyone can become a victim of financial fraud. The COVID19 pandemic has led to the rise of an increasing number of cyber-crime and identity theft in the digital marketplace. 

The unemployment rate has increased and this has adversely affected the financial and social status of many people causing them to develop a sense of despondency, frustration and desperation.

To prevent these scams from occurring, dark web scanning is becoming a popular tactic by many companies and darknet markets are monitored for the vendors that sell scam products. If they find a fraudulent seller, they can simply remove them from their platform before any potential consumers lose their money.

As people search for ways to make ends meet, more people turn to illegal activities like online fraud. COVID19 pandemic has increased crime rates and this is likely to continue as long as the pandemic remains uncontrolled.

Impact on financial infrastructure 

COVID19 has had a significant impact on our monetary infrastructure. The number of COVID19 infections is increasing at an alarming rate and more people in the core demographic continue to remain unemployed. 

The result of a significant number of unemployed people in the core demographic has led to civil unrest and an increase in crime rates.

Common Types of Frauds

To prevent these scams from occurring, consumers need to understand how they work and know what steps they can take to protect themselves. Here are some common types of financial fraud and ways that you can protect yourself and your money.

1. Increased cyber-crime 

COVID19 has led to a significant increase in fraudulent activity across the digital marketplace leading to an increase in cyber-crime. Cyber-criminals have increased their activities by selling counterfeit products, hacking into people’s computers to access personal information and banking accounts, as well as blackmailing people with the threat of releasing private information.

The main types of cyber-crime include hacking, phishing, tech scams, counterfeiting etc. But hacking into digital marketplace accounts and personal computers is the most viral one.

Hacking increases as people store more and more information on digital devices. The stored information is a treasure trove for cyber-criminals who will break into people’s accounts to steal credit card details, emails, passwords and other private information.

2. Blackmailing 

Cyber-criminals have increased their activities by stealing personal data from individuals and then blackmailing them with the threat of releasing all their private details to family, friends and work colleagues in a bid to extort money from them.

3. Counterfeit Products & Services 

This is one of the most common types of cyber-crime in the digital marketplace today. Cyber-criminals have increased their sales activities by selling counterfeit products and services online.

4. Mobile Tech Scams

Mobile tech scams is a term used to describe the potential for mobile phones or tablets to be hacked as a result of using them as tools to illegally access online content such as premium TV programs and films. This can happen when they connect to unsecured WIFI networks.

5. Phishing Scams

A phishing scam is a fraudulent attempt to seek information from a person by disguising as a trustworthy entity in an electronic communication.  Phishing is typically carried out by email spoofing or instant messaging, and it often directs users to enter details at a fake website whose look and feel are almost identical to the legitimate one.

Why has the pandemic led to an increase in fraud?

The recent coronaviruses that have hit the globe, create an opportunity to commit new types of phone and phishing scams because people may be less aware than usual about their health during these times where they’re worried about what could happen next. 

Furthermore, with millions of people left unable to work, more are vulnerable than ever before and all these reasons give scammers their chance at an easy target audience that isn’t guarded by exhaustion or fear over getting sick themselves just so they can survive another day living outside society’s margins.

How Consumers Can Protect Themselves from Fraud

The best way to protect yourself from scams is to never give out personal information over the phone, always do your research before buying anything from a computer technician and if you suspect that something odd is going on with your account, don’t make payments over the phone.

Phishing scams use email or websites designed to look like trusted companies’  websites to steal users’ personal and financial information. If someone asks you for your info by email or text message, do not click on any links and be mindful of the content of emails as scammers can use official logos and messaging to trick you into thinking it’s real.


In conclusion, the COVID19 pandemic has had a significant impact on our monetary infrastructure causing an increase in cyber-crime in the digital marketplace. 

Many people turn to online fraud to make ends meet while others resort to criminal activities like blackmailing and selling counterfeit products because of unemployment caused by the pandemic. The pandemic will continue to adversely affect the economy and this is likely to result in a higher number of digital frauds.