Tag Archives: phishing

Spammers Special Feast for St. Patrick’s Day

St. Patrick’s Day is a global celebration of Irish culture and a religious holiday on March 17, and it is very special to Irish communities and organizations. Recently, we have observed numerous St. Patrick’s Day related spam messages flowing into the Symantec Probe Network. Many of the spam samples observed are encouraging users to take advantage of clearance sales of cars as well as other product offers.

Interestingly, in one spam campaign, we observed a malicious spam email that tries to trick users by using the name of the event in conjunction with a popular site that allows users to send and receive large files. By clicking on the link, the user is redirected to a Web page that downloads some malicious code, which exploits several common vulnerabilities. The main motive of these spam campaigns is to lure recipients by taking advantage of the St. Patrick’s day holiday in the subject line and body of the email, such as: “Patrick[RANDOM NUMBERS]”. In such cases, users should be careful and avoid clicking on the links.

Figure1. Malicious spam email taking advantage of St. Patrick’s Day

The spam may lead to a website declaring a clearance sale on St. Patrick’s day.

Figure2. Financial spam targeting St. Patrick’s Day

When the user clicks on the “Get Prices Button” for the clearance prices of cars, they get redirected to another Web page that asks them to select the type of car model for a price comparison.

Figure3. Clearance website to compare the prices of car models

After entering the make and model of the car, the user gets redirected to another Web page asking for their personal details, including their address, email address, and payment details. Users should be wary of such information-stealing attempts by spammers.

Figure4. Asking the user for their personal information

Below are some of the subject lines that we have observed regarding the clearance sale spam attacks for St. Patrick’s Day:

  • /*St. Patrick’s Day clearance, test drive your new car… .* */
  • See Clearance Prices on all XXX Vehicles on St Patrick
  • St Patrick’ XXX Clearance
  • See Clearance Prices on all XXX Vehicles on St Patrick’s
  • 2013 St Patrick XXX Huge Discount – Slashing prices to meet Quotas

The following example is from a spam email that encourages users to take advantage of bogus offers and purchase products. By clicking the URL, the user is re-directed to a fake pharmaceuticals website.

Figure5. Spam website selling fake pharmaceutical products

Symantec advises our readers to be cautious when handling unsolicited or unexpected emails. We at Symantec are monitoring spam attacks 24×7 to ensure that readers are kept up-to-date with information on the latest threats.

Have a great St. Patrick’s Day!

Fake Friends Fool Facebook Users

      No Comments on Fake Friends Fool Facebook Users

The word friend is defined as “one who entertains for another such sentiments of esteem, respect and affection; an intimate associate.” But that definition seems to have gone out the window with the advent of social networks. Studies show 50% of people will accept a Facebook “friend” or LinkedIn invitation from a total stranger. So Read more…

Fake Friends Fool Facebook Users

      No Comments on Fake Friends Fool Facebook Users

The word friend is defined as “one who entertains for another such sentiments of esteem, respect and affection; an intimate associate.” But that definition seems to have gone out the window with the advent of social networks. Studies show 50% of people will accept a Facebook “friend” or LinkedIn invitation from a total stranger. So Read more…

Malware Attacks Targeting Hugo Chavez’s Death

Rumors of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez’s death were rampant on the news and Internet over the past month, and last Tuesday, the Venezuelan Vice President confirmed that Chavez died after a two year battle with cancer. Chavez’s death has…

Phishers Target Myanmar with Wut Hmone Shwe Yee

Contributor: Avdhoot Patil
Phishers have already made their mark in Southeast Asia by targeting Indonesians. For the past couple of years, celebrities have been their key interest in the region. Aura Kasih and Ahmad Dhani are good examples. In March 20…

More Than 30% of People Don’t Password Protect Their Mobile Devices

Are you guilty as charged? Whenever I bring this up in a group setting, it astonishes me how many people raise their hands. I wonder if they realize that they are putting all the personal information contained on their mobile device at risk. The unfortunate reality is that everyone loses things, and our devices can Read more…

MWC 2013: What’s the Hot Ticket?

      No Comments on MWC 2013: What’s the Hot Ticket?

Mobile World Congress, or MWC to the veterans, has arrived once again. We’ve been busy preparing for this event for the past couple of months, and now that we’re here, we’re faced with sleep deprivation, increased caffeine intake, and indecision as to whether or not we’ll need a sweater in the confusing Barcelona climate.  Nevertheless, Read more…

Risky Mobile Applications Plague Users

      No Comments on Risky Mobile Applications Plague Users

Once you own a smartphone or tablet, you are not likely to give it up. But it is essential that you can understand where the risks are and steer around them as you enjoy your mobile digital life. With the growth in mobile exploding, it is only natural for cybercriminals to move towards that device Read more…

Get Smart?Lock Down Your Apps

      No Comments on Get Smart?Lock Down Your Apps

Apps are what make smartphones smart. Without apps, smartphones would just be regular feature phones. Apps are what make our smartphones into our most personal computers. And like our computers, we need to protect our smartphones and apps. Some of the most commonly used apps on the Android platform such as Facebook, LinkedIn and Gmail Read more…

What’s on Your Phone? A Lot More than You Realize.

It’s funny to me that when having conversations about technology people still don’t see the parallel between their smartphone and their computer. Today, smartphone are connected to the Internet and have much of the same information as the personal computer, if not more. Now Androids and other smartphones have become little mini handheld computers. Carriers Read more…