Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) - UNODC updates


In these challenging times of the COVID-19 pandemic, UNODC continues to focus on delivering vital assistance to those in need, including to people who use drugs and with drug use disorders, who are in prison and who have HIV/Hepatitis C. We will not overcome this crisis if we don’t stop the pandemic in specific pockets of vulnerability. Staff at UNODC Headquarters in Vienna and in the field remain active in delivering on all of the Office’s mandates. This includes addressing crime that seeks to exploit the pandemic, such as cybercrime.

UNODC response


Advice from UNODC’s Chief of Cybercrime & Anti-Money Laundering, Neil Walsh

Cybercriminals are exploiting the COVID-19 virus pandemic by:

  • Sending emails with “virus updates” which then seek to gather your login and password details. Always verify the veracity of an email before you click on links or attachments.
  • Maps/Apps which display the spread of the virus are being compromised with malware – downloading these can compromise your computer and the whole organization.
  • Cybercriminals are exploiting online marketplaces – selling, for example, non-existent hand sanitizer.

CYBERCRIME AND COVID19: Risks and Responses (PDF)

Watch the Instagram live
with UNODC Chief of Cybercrime and Anti-Money Laundering Section, Neil Walsh and UN Youth Envoy, Jayathma Wickramanayake on how to #StaySafeOnline during #COVID19 pandemic here.


* To reduce the risk of exposure to COVID-19 to those working at the United Nations in Vienna and to comply with the measures taken by the Austrian authorities, personnel of Vienna-based UN organizations, including the staff of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime are working remotely or at home.