Australian health insurance sector targeted by notorious cybercrime group

Australian health insurance sector targeted by notorious cybercrime group

Australia's health insurance industry has been targeted by a well-known cybercrime group during the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to global cybersecurity firm Palo Alto Networks a series of eight campaigns from a cybercrime actor called SilverTerrier have been taking advantage of vulnerable businesses during COVID-19 confusion.

Of the eight campaigns three were specifically targeted at Australian companies, with the health insurance sector the main target of SilverTerrirer.

One of the campaigns saw emails sent with malicious attachments or links and contained subject lines ranging from "COVID:19 - FACIAL MASKS NEW ORDER", "latest vaccine release for corona-virus", to "COVID-19 Supplies".

On March 23 Palo Alto Networks discovered another email campaign from SilverTerrier in which an Australian health insurance provider was targeted with a phishing email scam.

The subject line and attachment were designed to portray an order form for new face masks.

The next day and continuing through to April 7 a fourth, more complex campaign was discovered where emails were sent to several Australian recipients, including an energy company.

Palo Alto Networks says this time three different email accounts were used to send three different malicious attachments, each using the same email subject relating to COVID-19 supplies.

The largest move by SilverTerrier came in April when Australian government institutions were targeted by a broadly distributed attack.

None of the malicious campaigns uncovered by Palo Alto Networks were successful in infecting their intended targets.

The cybersecurity firm encouraged businesses to remain vigilant; an important message considering how in 2019 these types of cyber-attacks caused $1.77 billion in losses according to the FBI.

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