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Security Response

Lesser Thanksgiving Gifts

Created: 23 Nov 2010 13:55:55 GMT • Updated: 23 Jan 2014 18:23:53 GMT • Translations available: 日本語
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Thanksgiving is a great occasion to thank dear friends and family for their kindness and also a good time to start readying Christmas holiday decorations. Symantec recently observed spam samples targeting Thanksgiving Day. The volume of Thanksgiving spam messages is less than what we anticipated; perhaps this is due to the crackdown on the Russian spam kingpin, Igor Gusev.

Many of the spam samples observed are encouraging users to take advantage of early bird specials to enjoy savings, which are available for a limited period only. Clicking the URL will automatically redirect the user to a fake offer website. The sample shown below is one such spam email that expresses Thanksgiving offers:

The following are some of the subject lines used in the spam samples:

Subject:  Save 25% on Thanksgiving Best Sellers and Centerpieces
Subject:  Limited Time Offer: Save 25% on Thanksgiving Centerpieces
Subject:  Limited Time Offer: Thanksgiving Flowers Starting at $19.99
Subject:  Save 25% on Thanksgiving Flowers
Subject:  Flowers from $19.99 - Thanksgiving Special

Spammers are focusing on these festivals and events, creating spam emails to lure users into divulging their personal information. A new tactic is being observed, in which domains resembling the name of the festival/event are registered and used for fake product promotions. In such cases users are cautioned to be more careful and avoid clicking on the link.

The following are examples of spam domains that are taking advantage of the Thanksgiving holiday:


The drop in email spam following the crackdown on the Russian spammer is certainly good news for Internet users. However, it is expected that the spam volume could quickly spring back to its previous level. Symantec advises our readers to be more cautious when handling unsolicited/unexpected emails. We at Symantec are monitoring spam attacks 24x7 to ensure that readers are kept up to date with information on the latest threats.

Happy Holidays!

Note: Thanks to Anand Muralidharan for contributed content.