How to spot scams like "Coordination Of Humanitarian Affairs" email scam

Also Known As: Coordination Of Humanitarian Affairs scam
Damage level: Medium

What kind of scam is "Coordination Of Humanitarian Affairs"?

After analyzing this email, we concluded that the scammers behind it seek to trick recipients into calling the provided number. Their email is disguised as a letter (a short notice) from the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) regarding financial assistance. This letter should be ignored.

Coordination Of Humanitarian Affairs spam campaign

More about the "Coordination Of Humanitarian Affairs" email scam

The email states that OCHA (in collaboration with the World Bank Group and International Monetary Fund) is helping countries to strengthen their pandemic response, increase disease surveillance and improve public health interventions.

It says that individuals, small businesses, and organizations/groups are eligible for financial assistance. The email instructs recipients to call the +1 (313) 647-8970 number to receive further instructions regarding that financial assistance.

Usually, when scammers are called, they try to gain personal information (e.g., names, surnames, credit card details, social security numbers, home addresses, etc.) or lure people into downloading malicious software or transferring money.

In this case, scammers aim to keep victims on the line as long as possible. Victims are rerouted to a premium-rated number which incurs high charges. Typically, the calls are directed to a real person (scammer) or to some Interactive Voice Response system.

Threat Summary:
Name  Coordination Of Humanitarian Affairs Email Scam
Threat Type Phishing, Scam, Social Engineering, Fraud
Fake Claim Recipients are elgible for financial assistance
Scammer Phone Number +1 (313) 647-8970
Disguise Letter from the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA)
Symptoms Unauthorized online purchases, changed online account passwords, identity theft, illegal access of the computer.
Distribution methods Deceptive emails, rogue online pop-up ads, search engine poisoning techniques, misspelled domains.
Damage Loss of sensitive private information, monetary loss, identity theft.
Malware Removal (Windows)

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Similar scams in general

In most cases, scammers behind emails of this type pretend to be legitimate companies, organizations, or other entities. Their goal usually is to gain personal information (that could be used to steal identities, online accounts, or misused in other ways) or extract money.

Examples of fraudulent emails are "Please Confirm Your Account Email Scam", "Norton Order Confirmation Email Scam", and "2022 FIFA Lottery Award Email Scam". Another important detail about emails from cybercriminals is that they can be used to trick recipients into infecting computers via malicious files or links.

How do spam campaigns infect computers?

Emails that cybercriminals use to trick users into infecting computers with malicious software contain malicious attachments or links. In both cases, threat actors aim to trick recipients into executing malware (opening malicious files or links) by themselves.

Examples of files that threat actors use to distribute malware are malicious executables, Javascript files, archives (like ZIP, RAR), ISO files, Microsoft Office, PDF documents, etc.

How to avoid installation of malware?

Do not trust irrelevant/suspicious email letters received from unknown addresses. Opening links or attachments included in such emails can cause computer infections. Always use official websites and stores as sources for downloading software (or files). Keep the operating system up to date and regularly scan it for threats with a reputable security solution.

Update and activate the installed software only with tools or functions provided by the official developers. If you've already opened malicious attachments, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows to automatically eliminate infiltrated malware.

Appearance of the "Coordination Of Humanitarian Affairs" email (GIF):

coordination of humanitarian affairs email scam appearance

Text presented in the "Coordination Of Humanitarian Affairs" email letter:

Subject: For enquiry call +1(313)647-8970


This is a  short notice informing you that the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) in collaboration with World Bank Group and IMF are taking broad, fast action to help developed and developing countries strengthen their pandemic response, increase disease surveillance, improve public health interventions, and help the private sector continue to operate and sustain jobs.

Communities, Businesses, and families need support for several months. These institutions organized emergency financial grants of millions of dollars as a relief fund to minimize the impact of COVID-19 pandemic on families; public health, Businesses and communities.

 People are selected randomly, via people search platforms and data collection databases.Therefore, you will receive a financial grant.Below are the specific amounts to be granted.........

  1. Individual 1 + $ 250.000
  2. .Small Businesses:$ 550.000
  3. Organisation /Groups:$ 850.000.00

 The purpose is to provide financial assistance for the full range of the recipient's activities, project support or programs that will help boost the economy and put people back to work.

You can also contact us on telephone directly or Whatsapp for urgent response.

Contact phone number: +1(313)647-8970

Yours truly,

Viktoria Kovalenko.

Public Information and Distribution.
Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs

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Quick menu:

Types of malicious emails:

Phishing email icon Phishing Emails

Most commonly, cybercriminals use deceptive emails to trick Internet users into giving away their sensitive private information, for example, login information for various online services, email accounts, or online banking information.

Such attacks are called phishing. In a phishing attack, cybercriminals usually send an email message with some popular service logo (for example, Microsoft, DHL, Amazon, Netflix), create urgency (wrong shipping address, expired password, etc.), and place a link which they hope their potential victims will click on.

After clicking the link presented in such email message, victims are redirected to a fake website that looks identical or extremely similar to the original one. Victims are then asked to enter their password, credit card details, or some other information that gets stolen by cybercriminals.

Email-virus icon Emails with Malicious Attachments

Another popular attack vector is email spam with malicious attachments that infect users' computers with malware. Malicious attachments usually carry trojans that are capable of stealing passwords, banking information, and other sensitive information.

In such attacks, cybercriminals' main goal is to trick their potential victims into opening an infected email attachment. To achieve this goal, email messages usually talk about recently received invoices, faxes, or voice messages.

If a potential victim falls for the lure and opens the attachment, their computers get infected, and cybercriminals can collect a lot of sensitive information.

While it's a more complicated method to steal personal information (spam filters and antivirus programs usually detect such attempts), if successful, cybercriminals can get a much wider array of data and can collect information for a long period of time.

Sextortion email icon Sextortion Emails

This is a type of phishing. In this case, users receive an email claiming that a cybercriminal could access the webcam of the potential victim and has a video recording of one's masturbation.

To get rid of the video, victims are asked to pay a ransom (usually using Bitcoin or another cryptocurrency). Nevertheless, all of these claims are false - users who receive such emails should ignore and delete them.

How to spot a malicious email?

While cyber criminals try to make their lure emails look trustworthy, here are some things that you should look for when trying to spot a phishing email:

  • Check the sender's ("from") email address: Hover your mouse over the "from" address and check if it's legitimate. For example, if you received an email from Microsoft, be sure to check if the email address is @microsoft.com and not something suspicious like @m1crosoft.com, @microsfot.com, @account-security-noreply.com, etc.
  • Check for generic greetings: If the greeting in the email is "Dear user", "Dear @youremail.com", "Dear valued customer", this should raise suspiciousness. Most commonly, companies call you by your name. Lack of this information could signal a phishing attempt.
  • Check the links in the email: Hover your mouse over the link presented in the email, if the link that appears seems suspicious, don't click it. For example, if you received an email from Microsoft and the link in the email shows that it will go to firebasestorage.googleapis.com/v0... you shouldn't trust it. It's best not to click any links in the emails but to visit the company website that sent you the email in the first place.
  • Don't blindly trust email attachments: Most commonly, legitimate companies will ask you to log in to their website and to view any documents there; if you received an email with an attachment, it's a good idea to scan it with an antivirus application. Infected email attachments are a common attack vector used by cybercriminals.

To minimise the risk of opening phishing and malicious emails we recommend using Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows

Example of a spam email:

Example of an email spam

What to do if you fell for an email scam?

  • If you clicked on a link in a phishing email and entered your password - be sure to change your password as soon as possible. Usually, cybercriminals collect stolen credentials and then sell them to other groups that use them for malicious purposes. If you change your password in a timely manner, there's a chance that criminals won't have enough time to do any damage.
  • If you entered your credit card information - contact your bank as soon as possible and explain the situation. There's a good chance that you will need to cancel your compromised credit card and get a new one.
  • If you see any signs of identity theft - you should immediately contact the Federal Trade Commission. This institution will collect information about your situation and create a personal recovery plan.
  • If you opened a malicious attachment - your computer is probably infected, you should scan it with a reputable antivirus application. For this purpose, we recommend using Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows.
  • Help other Internet users - report phishing emails to Anti-Phishing Working Group, FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center, National Fraud Information Center and U.S. Department of Justice.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Why did I receive this email?

Emails of this type are not personal (scammers send the same letter to all recipients).

I have provided my personal information when tricked by this email, what should I do?

Change all passwords if you have provided login credentials (like username and password). Contact the corresponding authorities if you have provided other personal information (like credit card details, ID card information, social security number, etc.).

I have downloaded and opened a malicious file attached to an email, is my computer infected?

Thus, it depends on the file that was attached to the email. For example, Microsoft Office documents cannot infect computers unless users open them and enable macros commands. Archive files cannot cause harm unless users extract and open their contents. Executable files usually infect computers right after their execution.

I have sent cryptocurrency to the address presented in such email, can I get my money back?

No, crypto transactions are irreversible. If you have already sent crypto to cybercriminals, it will not be possible to retrieve it.

I have read the email but did not open the attachment, is my computer infected?

It is safe to open emails even if they contain malicious links or files. The emails themselves cannot infect computers.

Will Combo Cleaner remove malware infections that were present in email attachment?

Yes, Combo Cleaner will detect and remove malware (it can eliminate almost all known malware). High-end malware usually hides deep in the system. Thus, running a quick scan may not be enough to detect and eliminate it.

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About the author:

Tomas Meskauskas

Tomas Meskauskas - expert security researcher, professional malware analyst.

I am passionate about computer security and technology. I have an experience of over 10 years working in various companies related to computer technical issue solving and Internet security. I have been working as an author and editor for pcrisk.com since 2010. Follow me on Twitter and LinkedIn to stay informed about the latest online security threats. Contact Tomas Meskauskas.

PCrisk security portal is brought by a company RCS LT. Joined forces of security researchers help educate computer users about the latest online security threats. More information about the company RCS LT.

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Malware activity

Global malware activity level today:

Medium threat activity

Increased attack rate of infections detected within the last 24 hours.

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