Hooky, cokey Halloweenand ourfire breakerlockdown

The problem comes if they start clicking on unreliable web pages or operating links and attachments often sent by email. This form of scam is called “phishing”. 

by Victor Cherubim 

31 October 2020 happens to coincide with the full moon in Halloween, the first time after a similar occurrence in 1944. This year it is as well, a Blue Moon with two sights of the full moon in one month. 

Halloween is the celebration observed in many western Christian countries on the eve of the feast of All Hallows Day or “All Saints Day”. 

This year like most of the occasions which we celebrate will be rather different to previous years. Perhaps, there may be no displays by children donning spooky dress visiting households in the neighbourhood for “trick or treat”.

With infection rates on the rise, with new words being coined like “tier” and “fire breaker lockdowns” the Government and the various Civic Councils are advising parents of the potential risks of allowing their children to go out trick or treat.

Besides, the prospect of many children ringing on the same doorbells and rummaging in the same bowl of sweetis an unnecessary safety risk to take. But who said there won’t be hooky, cookey?

What’s hookey,cookey?

Hooky, Cookey is a famous and popular campfire dance often associated with Bonfire Guy Fawkes Night on the Fifth of November.

 As the song goes:

“I put my right hand in, I put my right hand out  

 In Out, in out

Shake it all about”

As the song continues, the “left hand is put in,” then the “right hand is put out,” then the “left foot,” then the “whole head”.

I am sure this rhymed lyric will not resonate with many in Sri Lanka but is more than fun in the West. This is because all traditions are generally associated with dancing and merrymaking.

Regrettably, with fire breaker lockdowns, or Tier 3 & Tier 4 Lockdowns involving over 10 million people in the whole of the countries of the United Kingdom, there will not be any traditional celebrations allowed. 

What has taken its place?

There is indeed an innovation this year. The latest is the sending email borne cyber attacks being utilised by cyber criminals to haunt the vulnerable and the weak in society. 

We are warned by the Police that 90% of targeted cyber attacks start with the sending of an email, followed by a phone call to targeted individuals stating that their phone lines are bugged, and their emails have been hacked.

How do cyber criminals operate?

The modus operandi is through an ordinary telephone call received from the service provider of the telecom company giving a warning to the customer that they wish “to adjust” their line to trace and track the VPN, or the Virtual Private Network from their terminals.

Then they continue gathering as much of the customer’s private landline information stating that the telephone line of the customer was all along misconnected to the local “public memory” through the WiFi(LAN) or Local Area Network. Then they pronounce they will adjust their internet line to a more “Secure Server” without their local neighbourhood lines having access. After all this “torture” the customer’s landline is remotely controlled by the Cyber Criminals on “Team Viewer” programme. 

After the job is done, the customer is continually pestered with calls on the landline by cyber criminals.

Beware of the new hooky, Cokey? 

Cumbria Constabulary Cyber & Digital Crime Unit have recently sent out notices to people in the County warning people falling prey to cyber crime to be on the look out for the threat from fraudsters who are using the Coronavirus crisis to steal money from the most vulnerable people.

The problem comes if they start clicking on unreliable web pages or operating links and attachments often sent by email. This form of scam is called “phishing”. 

The warning is not to open shady, unwarranted, unknown senders of email and to report a scam call to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040.

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