Scammers are sending 18 million hoax emails about Covid-19 to Gmail users every day, according to Google, the BBC reports.
The tech giant says the pandemic has led to an explosion of phishing attacks in which criminals try to trick users into revealing personal data.
The company said it was blocking more than 100 million phishing emails a day. Over the past week, almost a fifth were scam emails related to coronavirus.
The virus may now be the biggest phishing topic ever, tech firms say.
Google’s Gmail is used by 1.5 billion people.
Individuals are being sent a huge variety of emails which impersonate authorities, such as the World Health Organization (WHO), in an effort to persuade victims to download software or donate to bogus causes.
Cyber-criminals are also attempting to capitalise on government support packages by imitating public institutions.
Google claims that its machine-learning tools are able to block more than 99.9% of emails from reaching its users.