Coronavirus latest news: Logging into NHS app using airport Wi-Fi leaves you ‘open to hackers’

Britons travelling abroad have been warned against using airport WiFi to log into the NHS app to their vaccine passports in case they hand over their health details to hackers.

It follows Government plans to add vaccine passports to the NHS smartphone app which could be used to allow people to travel abroad by proving they have been vaccinated against coronavirus.

But logging into the app and loading health data while on unsecure WiFi networks could see hackers gain access to passwords as well as sensitive personal information about people’s health conditions.

Peter Yapp, a Schillings partner who was previously a deputy director at GCHQ’s National Cyber Security Centre, urged people not to rely on networks that can steal your data.

“Don’t access this, if at all possible, through WiFi connections that you don’t know anything about,” he said. “That just gives someone the opportunity to potentially get the data as it’s passing through.”

Hackers have used their own malicious public WiFi networks in the past to trick people into signing up for them and then stealing their information as it passes through.

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Cambodia reports daily record of 730 new cases

Cambodia reported a daily record of 730 new coronavirus cases, the health ministry said in a statement on Sunday, as the country struggles to contain a wave of infections that emerged about two months ago.

The Southeast Asian nation has recorded one of the world’s smallest caseloads, but the recent outbreak that was first detected in late February has caused infections to climb to 14,520, with 103 deaths.

The capital Phnom Penh, which has the most cases in the country, is under lockdown until May 5 and has declared some districts “red zones”, banning people from leaving their homes except for medical reasons.

People wait to get tested inside a red zone in Phnom Penh

People wait to get tested inside a red zone in Phnom Penh



Vaccine campaign begins amid virus surge in Syria

A Covid-19 vaccine campaign kicked off in Syria’s last rebel-held enclave on Saturday, with a 45-year-old frontline nurse becoming the first to receive a UN-secured jab.

Nizar Fattouh, a nurse in Ibn Sina Hospital in Idlib city, received one of 53,800 AstraZeneca vaccines delivered to northwest Syria through Turkey on April 21.

The vaccines come amid a new surge of infections in the war-torn country. Syria’s supplies of oxygen are depleted and its hospitals were already overwhelmed from 10 years of conflict and deteriorating health care services.

Idlib health official Yasser Najib said the jabs were provided through the UN-led COVAX programme for the world’s poor and developing nations.


Thailand reports second day of record-high virus deaths

Thailand’s Health Ministry on Sunday reported 1,940 new coronavirus cases, while deaths hit 21 for a second day, the highest daily number of fatalities since the pandemic began.

Thailand largely controlled the virus early in the pandemic through shutdowns and strict border controls. But a deadly third wave that begin in early April includes the highly transmissible B.1.1.7 variant and has accounted for about half of its total cases and deaths.

Sunday’s numbers brought the country’s total confirmed infections since the pandemic began last year to 68,984. Total deaths are now at 245. 

Thailand has vaccinated nearly 1.5 million people so far, mostly medical workers and vulnerable people, using imported doses of China’s Sinovac and the AstraZeneca vaccines. A mass vaccination programme is to kick off in June with locally manufactured AstraZeneca doses. 

A cleaner wearing personal protective equipment disinfects Hua Lamphong railway station in Bangkok

A cleaner wearing personal protective equipment  disinfects Hua Lamphong railway station in Bangkok



Secondary school pupils ‘to be offered vaccinations from September’

Secondary school pupils will reportedly be offered Covid-19 vaccinations from September under plans being developed by the NHS.

Health service officials are compiling planning documents which include a measure to offer a single dose of the Pfizer jab to children aged 12 and older when the new school year starts, according to The Sunday Times.

Pfizer has said trials of its vaccine in children aged 12 to 15 showed 100 per cent efficacy and a strong immune response.

The plans, which the Times said it had confirmed with Government and NHS sources, are contingent on advice from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation due this summer.


Taiwan’s first batch of aid leaves for India

Taiwan’s first batch of aid to India to help it fight a surging increase in infections left for New Delhi on Sunday, consisting of 150 oxygen concentrators and 500 oxygen cylinders, Taiwan’s Foreign Ministry said.

Countries around the world have been rushing to help India alleviate the crisis. India recorded more than 400,000 new cases for the first time on Saturday as it battles a devastating second wave.

Taiwan’s Foreign Ministry said the aid consignment left on a China Airlines freighter on Sunday morning and would be received by India’s Red Cross.

Taiwan will continue to provide aid as needed, it added.


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