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Security Response

Chinese Spammers Stay Up to Date with Popular Internet Activities

Created: 27 Oct 2009 20:20:04 GMT • Updated: 23 Jan 2014 18:31:45 GMT
Vivian Ho's picture
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Chinese spammers are very adaptive to new Internet social mediums that might attract recipients’ interests in order to get Web hits. Spammers have done their research on popular social networking activities and living habits, thus setting up spam traps for possible hits. Recipients often fall for the spammers’ tricks because they may not be aware of updated spam news or phishing alerts.

Recently we observed Chinese spammers sending out moneymaking scams using a popular free micro blogging service. This type of free social networking allows users to send live updates through short text messages or links. In this sample we found that a spammer registered a legitimate user account and then sent out a friend invitation request. All links lead to the same money making promo ads:

Sample 1:

From: Popular social networking <Details removed>
Subject: 兼職工作,全職收入-每月增加2到 5萬 邀請您到 <Details removed> 註冊帳號

Subject: part-time work, full-time income - increase 20 to 50 thousand dollars every month invite you to register a <Details removed> account

Body Translation:

I’ve been playing <Details removed> for a while, I hope you’ll try it!
Click here to accept my invitation:
http://www.<Details removed>/xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx/invite/2
Click here to view my personal webpage:
http://www.<Details removed>/xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Below is another example of spammers disguised as a legitimate online auction administrator, notifying sellers that they might violate the policy by being involved in illegal bidding activity. They sent out a legitimate looking notification email and tried to trick the seller into logging in with their account name and password.

Sample 2:

From: < Details Removed >
Subject: <Details removed> 拍賣違規通知信   

Subject: Suspected illegal <Details removed> bidding product notification


Body Translation:

<Details removed> Bidding Admin Notification
[image: Go to my shop on <Details removed> Bidding]
This store activity violated our auction policy.


Note: My thanks to blog contributors Ching-Yu Hsu and Hitomi Lin.

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