ABSTRACTBACKGROUND: Latin American countries have been profoundly affected by COVID-19. Due to the alarming incidence of identified cases, we intended to explore which psycho-social elements may be influencing the poor adherence toward the mandatory control measures among the population. OBJECTIVE: We aimed to assess the knowledge, attitudes and vulnerability perception of Peruvians during the coronavirus outbreak.METHOD: Using a web-based cross-sectional survey, we collected data from 225 self-selected participants, evaluating demographic information. The overall respondents were between 18 and 29 years old (56.8%), being female (n = 134), belonging to educated groups, and graduated professionals (69.3%), the majority of them. RESULTS: Logistic regression showed that knowledge is highly correlated with education (p=0.031), occupation (p=0.002), and age (p= 0.016). Our study identified that, although people reported adequate knowledge by identifying expected symptoms and virus transmission ways in COVID-19 disease. There is a significant perceived susceptibility to contract the mentioning virus, displaying stigmatized behavior (59.1%) and fear of contracting the virus from others (70.2%). Additionally, it is reported to lack people's confidence to health national authorities on the sanitary responses (62.7%), preparedness for the disease (76.9%) and the lack of adequate measures to deal with it (51.1%). CONCLUSION: We suggest that public policies consider guidelines on knowledge translation and risk communication strategies for both containing psychological responses in a timely manner and ensuring compliance with public control measures by the population.