Threat Reports

COVID-19 Alert – 01 August 2020

This alert was created automatically by our award-winning intelligence product Silobreaker Online. Story selection is determined by an algorithm and based on queries initially set by a Silobreaker user. Contact productinfo[at]silobreaker[dot]com for more information.

Actions by Governments
  • AUSTRALIA’S WORST COVID CLUSTERS: Map reveals horror spread (
  • Are people in Germany throwing caution to the wind? Seriously? (Deutsche Welle)
  • Belgian engineer incites fear of coronavirus outbreak in Taiwan (Taiwan News Online)
  • Daily coronavirus infections in France surge back to lockdown levels (New York Daily News)
  • Denmark’s Sunclass Airlines resumes operations (CH-Aviation)
  • Doctors in Spain prepare to battle coronavirus as country reopens (Mail Online UK)
  • Doctors in Spain prepare to battle coronavirus as country reopens economy (Mail Online UK)
  • Germany: Second COVID-19 wave deadly for retailers (Deutsche Welle)
  • How coronavirus is spreading in India | Infographics (India Today)
  • Israel, India conducting trials for 4 technologies with potential to detect COVID in about 30 secs (Outlook India)
  • Japan pushes back budget surplus target by two years due to coronavirus (News On Japan)
  • No confirmed date for reopening borders to the rest of Canada, Nova Scotia premier says (Global News Canada)
  • Photos: Australia reports record single day surge of COVID-19 (Hindustan Times)
  • Photos: India’s Covid-19 fatalities now fifth highest globally (Hindustan Times)
  • Portugal’s CGD first-half profit plunges 41% as coronavirus bites (Reuters)
  • Russia plans mass vaccination against coronavirus from October (The Straits Times All News)
  • South Korea church leader arrested over coronavirus outbreak (Deutsche Welle)
  • Spain didn’t introduce nationwide mandatory mask-wearing three weeks before new UK quarantine rules (Reuters)
  • Spain: Fear of a new coronavirus lockdown (Deutsche Welle)
  • The latest numbers on COVID-19 in Canada for Aug. 1 (
  • UK – Boris Johnson announces planned easing of restrictions on hold (
  • UK – Boris Johnson delays latest relaxation of coronavirus lockdown (London Evening Standard)
  • UK – Boris Johnson scraps tomorrow’s lockdown changes at last minute amid coronavirus second wave fears (Yahoo! News Australia)
  • UK – Boris Johnson slams the brakes on England’s new Covid-19 freedoms (
  • UK – Boris Johnson: ‘Hands, face, space… and get a test’ (Mail Online UK)
  • US – About 20% of New Jersey prisoners could be freed to avoid virus (Chicago Tribune)
  • US – CDC director wasn’t told of decision to send COVID-19 data directly to DC (New York Post)
  • US – CDC predicts US coronavirus death toll could soar to 182,000 by late August (New York Post)
  • US – California reports its first teen death related to coronavirus ( – Los Angeles Times)
  • US – Coronavirus News: Is CDC Study of Summer Camp Outbreak A Harbinger of Schools Reopening? (International Business Times)
  • US – Coronavirus spread among children in Georgia youth camp, CDC says (
  • US – Daily coronavirus updates: Connecticut’s COVID-19 numbers remain low, but is rate of transmission cause for concern? (Hartford Courant)
  • US – Fears grow that releasing thousands of California prisoners will spread COVID-19 into communities ( – Los Angeles Times)
  • US – Study highlights importance of CDC mitigation strategies (CDC Online Newsroom)
  • US – The National Institutes of Health awarded $249 million in grants to seven companies making new coronavirus diagnost… (WSJ – Twitter)
  • US – Wisconsin parents: What do you think about the reopening plan for your children’s schools? (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)
  • WHO’s latest situation report (WHO)
Actions by Companies
  • A Cloud Surge Lifts Amazon, Microsoft and Google ( US Business)
  • AirAsia resuming more international flights (Philippine Star)
  • Altice Dominicana Q2 revenues fall 16% on Covid slowdown (Telecompaper)
  • Amazon beats Covid-19 pandemic woes, clocks $345-million profit (Business Standard India)
  • Apple to delay release of iPhone 12 due to coronavirus pandemic (
  • Apple, Amazon, Facebook and Google all reported better-than-expected quarterly results during the pandemic… (WSJ – Twitter)
  • Caterpillar offers cautious outlook after coronavirus hits sales (Reuters)
  • Cathay Pacific offers older pilots early retirement as part of Covid-19 pandemic restructuring (South China Morning Post – News)
  • Coronavirus Update: What Merck, Chevron, Colgate-Palmolive, Caterpillar Said About the Pandemic (
  • De Beers likely to cut jobs after COVID-19 hit (
  • EU strikes a deal with Sanofi for 300 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine (
  • FDA Authorizes Two Siemens Covid-19 Serology Tests (Bloomberg Law)
  • Huawei overtakes Samsung in global smartphone shipments in Q2: report (Xinhua News Agency)
  • Indian Oil sees over 40% drop in consolidated Q1 PAT to Rs2,226.80cr; Covid-19 lockdown impacts sales (India Infoline)
  • KLM to axe up to 5,000 jobs due to ‘unprecedented’ crisis (The Straits Times All News)
  • L’Oréal CEO: Confident on second half of 2020 despite pandemic risk (CNBC)
  • Microsoft roundup: Potential $1B cloud deal, remote work deadline extended (Seeking Alpha)
  • Microsoft to open offices on January 19, 2021: Report (IANS Live)
  • Microsoft will not be completely reopening US offices before January 2021 (Hindu Business Line)
  • Microsoft won’t start reopening its offices until January 2021, and even then it will move slowly (MSFT) (Business Insider)
  • Mondi supports vulnerable local communities through Covid-19 initiatives (Zululand Observer)
  • Orlando Stadium to host Nedbank Cup semis (
  • Ryanair brings legal challenge to ‘green list’ restrictions (Irish Independent)
  • SBI touts strong ‘immunity’ as profit surges in pandemic (Reuters India)
  • Sun Pharma posts ₹1,656 crore loss in April-June quarter (
  • Swiss Re CFO: We are past the worst of the Covid-19 pandemic (CNBC)
  • Tata Motors Goa unit struggles to stay on road (Navhind Times)
  • Tata Motors Records Loss In Q1 FY2021 As Coronavirus Crisis Dents Sales (NDTV)
  • Tata Motors’ Q1 FY21 business adversely impacted by COVID 19 (United News of India)
  • The latest on Covid-19 stimulus, and why Spotify spent big on Joe Rogan: CNBC After Hours (CNBC)
  • US to pay $2.1b to Sanofi, GSK, in COVID-19 vaccine deal (Arab News)
  • Vivendi posts organic revenue drop of 8% in Q2, hurt by Covid-19 lockdown (Telecompaper)
  • Wipro brings back stranded employees, family members from Australia, US (Economic Times)
Drugs, Treatments & Vaccines
  • $2.1 Billion Deal Made For COVID-19 Vaccine With Sanofi and GSK (International Business Times)
  • Amid race to develop a coronavirus vaccine, growing concerns of who gets it first (
  • Coronavirus Developments: Dr. Fauci Shows Optimism Over Vaccine, US Enters Into Vaccine Deal, Coronavirus Cases Grow (International Business Times)
  • Dr. Fauci assures a coronavirus vaccine will be a ‘reality’ (MSNBC)
  • EU poised to secure Sanofi deal for coronavirus vaccine (Nasdaq)
  • Human biology is a matter of life or death: Effective science communication for COVID‐19 research (American Journal of Human Biology)
  • Japan reserves 120m doses of BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine (Pharmafile)
  • Omaha company seeks volunteers for COVID-19 vaccine trial (Omaha World-Herald)
  • Risk of COVID-19 among front-line health-care workers and the general community: a prospective cohort study (Lancet)
  • Tech Giants Send Nasdaq Up 150+, but Coronavirus Vaccine Stocks Suffer on Gilead Earnings, Moderna Hack Attack (Nasdaq)
  • The U.S. has inked a $2.1 billion deal with Sanofi and GlaxoSmithKline to secure 100 million doses of coronavirus v… (WSJ – Twitter)
  • Understanding the impact of interruptions to HIV services during the COVID-19 pandemic: A modelling study (Lancet)
  • Vaccine companies searching for 1-shot dose of COVID-19 vaccine (ABC News)
Societal & Economic Impact
‘Google searches during pandemic hint at future increase in suicide’
Photo Credit: IANS IANSLive New York, Aug 1 (IANS) Researchers have found that Google searches for information about financial difficulties and disaster relief have increased sharply compared to the pre-pandemic times while googling related to suicide…
A tale of two crises: COVID-19 and climate change
Deseret News
As a doctor who works in an emergency room, I have been on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic. As a university professor in pediatrics and global health, I have also been anxiously engaged in the discussion about the impact of climate change on…
Big tech earnings surge while economy plummets during Covid-19
Business Times Singapore
Quarterly results from Apple, Amazon, Facebook and Alphabet show the industry is capitalising on the crisis San Francisco THE largest US technology companies are thriving in a pandemic that has increased dependence on their products and services, while…
Congress fails to agree on another Covid-19 stimulus deal—Here’s what lawmakers are saying
Republicans and Democrats have made little progress toward a coronavirus relief deal as economic data shows an economy still reeling from the coronavirus pandemic. An enhanced federal unemployment benefit is expiring even as initial jobless claims…
Fauci, Jordan spar about protests amid COVID-19 pandemic
Global News Canada
U.S. Rep. Jim Jordan on Friday repeatedly questioned Dr. Anthony Fauci, the country’s top infectious disease expert, about whether protests increase the spread of COVID-19 and if they should be limited by the government. Fauci would not answer…
Ford says contact-tracing app ‘critical’ tool in containing COVID-19
Yahoo! Canada
Ontario Premier Doug Ford urged residents to download the country's new contact-tracing app as Toronto and Peel Region enter Stage 3 of the province's COVID-19 recovery plan.
Group urges people to don reusable masks vs COVID-19 as disposables worsening plastic pollution
Philippine Daily Inquirer
CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY—The environment group EcoWaste Coalition has urged the public to opt for reusable face masks, instead of disposable ones, in heeding health protocol to prevent the transmission of SARS Cov2, the coronavirus that causes COVID-19….
IMF stresses central banks transparency, accountability during pandemic
Dar es Salaam, Tanzania (PANA) – More transparency and accountability are required to maintain public support, safeguard independence, and enhance policy effectiveness in central banks, according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF)
Pandemic unemployment benefits set to expire
Supplemental unemployment benefits given during the pandemic are coming to an end and Congress still hasn’t come up with a plan on what kind of relief will come next. Newsday’s Chelsea Irizarry has the story. Credit: Howard Schnapp; James Carbone;…
The historic coronavirus recession — by the numbers
The historic magnitude of the global coronavirus recession is starting to become clear. Second quarter data for the EU point to a GDP hit of nearly 12 percent on top of a 3.2 point contraction in the first three months of the year. It is hard to…
Geopolitical Impact
Australian high commissioner criticises Chinese Amb. to India for objecting to comments on South China Sea
Outlook India
New Delhi, Jul 31 PTI) Australian High Commissioner Barry O''Farrell on Friday hit back at Chinese Ambassador to India Sun Weidong for objecting to his comments about China’s "destabilising" manoeuvres in the South China Sea, and asserted that…
China says Hong Kong election delay ‘necessary and reasonable’
Channel NewsAsia
HONG KONG: China said Friday (Jul 31) it supported Hong Kong's decision to delay legislative elections for a year because of a surge in coronavirus cases, a move that has infuriated democracy supporters. "It is very necessary, reasonable and legal,"…
Chinese and Australian envoys to India spar over South China Sea on Twitter
India Today
Australian High Commissioner to India, Barry O'Farrell said Australia "rejects" China's "unlawful" claims in the South China Sea. To this, Chinese envoy Sun Weidong asserted that Beijing's claims were in conformity with international laws, including…
Concern over Covid-19 vaccines from Russia, China
Asia Times Online
Live version of coronavirus map America’s top infectious diseases official has raised concerns over the safety of Covid-19 vaccines being developed by China and Russia as the world scrambles for answers to a pandemic the WHO warned will be felt for…
Hong Kong postpones elections over virus as China crackdown deepens
Today Online
HONG KONG — Hong Kong's democracy supporters were dealt a huge blow on Friday (July 31) as authorities postponed local elections because of the coronavirus, capping a devastating month of political disqualifications, arrests for social media posts…
Hong Kong postpones legislative elections for a year citing Covid-19 surge. Opposition groups say the move is part…
WSJ – Twitter
Hong Kong postpones legislative elections for a year citing Covid-19 surge. Opposition groups say the move is part of a political crackdown by China.
How China managed to manipulate opinion pieces in India on coronavirus
China knows how to control the narrative both at home and abroad. The Dragon has now attempted to control the minds of Indian newspaper readers. The method Beijing uses is very simple – make one of its officials write an op-ed for a newspaper. An…
Risk of disease spread bigger in era of globalisation: Vardhan
Outlook India
New Delhi, Jul 31 (PTI) In an era of globalisation, the risk of the spread of a disease is even bigger since it does not distinguish between the boundaries of countries, Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan said on Friday. Varhdan urged the WHO members…
US says unlikely to use China, Russia coronavirus vaccine as race heats up
Hindustan Times
America’s top infectious diseases official has raised concerns over the safety of Covid-19 vaccines being developed by China and Russia as the world scrambles for answers to a pandemic the WHO warned will be felt for decades. Six months after the…
Warranty Claims Litigation May Surge Due To COVID-19, Brexit
, 6:12 PM EDT) — With the twin pressures of COVID-19 and Brexit placing businesses from all sectors under acute financial stress, recent business buyers may look closely at their purchase agreements to see if there is opportunity to recover losses…
White House condemns China for delaying Hong Kong elections despite Trump suggesting same for US
The Independent
The White House on Friday condemned China's decision to delay an election in Hong Kong by one year due to the coronavirus pandemic even as Donald Trump continues floating the idea about the US election slated for November. More follows…
Cybersecurity Impact
China-backed hackers targeted Moderna: US official
Straits Times
WASHINGTON • Chinese government-linked hackers targeted biotech company Moderna, a US-based coronavirus vaccine research developer, this year in a bid to steal data, said an American security official tracking Chinese hacking. China yesterday rejected…
Cyber-Attacks, Disinformation, Pre-Election Chaos And The Pandemic Combine To Produce New Strategic Threats Against The U.S.
Forbes – Cybersecurity RSS
According to Marcus Fowler, director of strategic threat at Darktrace, the combination of events is being helped along by outside players who are happy to see the chaos in the U. S. “You have the pandemic to layer on top of what was there before,”…
CyberScoopNews – How COVID-19 changed Cyber Command’s ‘Cyber Flag’ exercise
CyberScoopNews – Twitter
How COVID-19 changed Cyber Command's 'Cyber Flag' exercise
FBI: COVID-19-Themed Phishing Spreads Netwalker Ransomware
Data Breach Today
COVID-19 , Fraud Management & Cybercrime , Fraud Risk Management Attacks Target Government Agencies and a Variety of Others Prajeet Nair (@prajeetspeaks) • July 31, 2020 The FBI is warning that attacks using a ransomware variant called Netwalker have…
IT, cybersecurity defy tight budgets Most recent
Despite tight budgets due to the pandemic, investment in IT and cybersecurity systems continues to grow in Thailand, driven by accelerated digital transformations and changes in cyber-attack patterns, says Palo Alto Networks, a global cybersecurity…
InfoSecHotSpot – Vaccine Research ‘Fair Game for Cyber-Spies,’ Expert Warns After Chinese Hackers Tied to Moderna Attack As long as…
InfoSecHotSpot – Twitter
Vaccine Research 'Fair Game for Cyber-Spies,' Expert Warns After Chinese Hackers Tied to Moderna Attack As long as scientists researching a COVID-19 vaccine, cyber-espionage groups will be hunting for ways … the Ministry of State Security, but also…
NM logs 513 COVID fraud complaints
Albuquerque Journal
Coronavirus-related scams are rolling in and ensnaring some New Mexicans. From Jan. 1 to July 30, the Federal Trade Commission received 513 total reports of coronavirus related complaints from consumers in New Mexico. All told, these reports added up…
US claim that China committed cyber-attacks on Moderna slanderous: FM
Global Times
The US' claim that hackers linked to the Chinese government targeted US coronavirus vaccine research developer Moderna in an attempt to steal data is completely slanderous without any actual evidence, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin…
Vaccine Research ‘Fair Game for Cyber-Spies,’ Expert Warns After Chinese Hackers Tied to Moderna Attack
MSNBC Newsweek
As long as scientists researching a COVID -19 vaccine, cyber -espionage groups will be hunting for ways to steal it, experts say. Reacting to a Reuters report identifying biotechnology company Moderna as a victim of a Chinese-backed hack back in…
ZDNet – Cyber crime on the rise during COVID-19 pandemic by @TonyaHallRadio
ZDNet – Twitter
Cyber crime on the rise during COVID-19 pandemic by @TonyaHallRadio

Although Silobreaker has relied on what it regards as reliable sources while compiling the content herein, Silobreaker cannot guarantee the accuracy, completeness, integrity or quality of such content and no responsibility is accepted by Silobreaker in respect of such content. Readers must determine for themselves what reliance they should place on the compiled content herein.

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