Security Advisory: Global Phishing Campaign Targeting the COVID-19 Vaccine Cold Chain  

December 28, 2020

At the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, IBM Security X-Force created a threat intelligence task force dedicated to tracking down COVID-19 cyber threats against organizations that are keeping the vaccine supply chain moving.

The cold chain is a component of the vaccine supply chain that ensures the safe preservation of vaccines in temperature-controlled environments during their storage and transportation.

The adversary impersonated a business executive from Haier Biomedical, a credible and legitimate member company of the COVID-19 vaccine supply chain and qualified supplier. The company is purportedly the world’s only complete cold chain provider.

Disguised as this employee, the adversary sent phishing emails to organizations believed to be providers of material support to meet transportation needs within the COVID-19 cold chain. We believe that the purpose of this COVID-19 phishing campaign may have been to harvest credentials, possibly to gain future unauthorized access to corporate networks and sensitive information relating to COVID-19 vaccine distribution.

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