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Showing posts tagged with Online Fraud
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Mathew Maniyara | 18 Apr 2013 15:03:02 GMT

Contributor: Avdhoot Patil

Phishers have already shown interest in the violence that erupted recently in various parts of the Arab world. The phishing attack involving Syria is a good example. Phishers are now taking advantage of the political unrest in Egypt as protests in the country continue. In March 2013, phishers promoted former Egyptian Prime Minister Ahmed Shafik in a phishing site. The phishing site was hosted on servers based in North Carolina, USA. The name “Ahmed Shafik” was used in the domain name of the phishing site.

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Figure 1. Phishing site designed as a fake official website of Ahmed Shafik

The phishing site was designed to look like an official page of the politician. It...

Samir_Patil | 17 Apr 2013 12:04:02 GMT

Contributor: Christopher Mendes

On the afternoon of April 15, 2013, just when many people were on the cusp of conquering another personal milestone by completing the Boston Marathon, they were hit hard by an act of cowardice. Two bombs struck near the finish line of the Marathon on Monday. Within hours of the bomb blast, large malware-laden spam emails started doing the rounds.

Symantec customers are protected from this attack. Symantec blocks the attack by multi-level detection using Antispam, Intrusion Prevention System technology (IPS), and antivirus (AV). The AV detects the downloaded file as Packed.Generic.402. IPS detects the attack as Web Attack: Red Exploit Kit Website.

The spam email is very simple. The...

Ashish Diwakar | 17 Apr 2013 03:41:34 GMT

Contributor: Avdhoot Patil

Phishers continue to target Indian movies with phishing scams. The phishing site featuring the movie “Bodyguard” is one example, and this month Symantec observed a phishing attack in which phishers used a song from the Telugu movie “Brindavanam” as bait.

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The phishing site displayed a picture of a musical number from the movie “Brindavanam” starring Telugu actresses Samantha and Kajal Aggarwal in the left side of the phishing page. There is also a plot summary of the movie below the image. The phishing page then encouraged users to enter their login credentials stating that, after logging in, they could watch the video. The pictured musical number from the movie was taken from the legitimate movie website. After...

Mathew Maniyara | 16 Apr 2013 17:15:29 GMT

Contributor: Sandeep Ingale

When it comes to financial organizations, being informed about best security practices is every customer’s right. Many organizations provide this information on their websites to help their customers learn how to take full advantage of the services available to them while staying secure. Interestingly, these Web pages, meant for the guidance and protection of customers, were mimicked by phishers with the intent of tricking people into handing over personal information.

In March, we discovered a phishing site spoofing a popular credit card services company that asked users for confidential information, allegedly for additional security. It should be kept in mind that a legitimate site will never ask for confidential information for this reason.

The phishing site prompts users through a three-step procedure for activating their card and adding higher security. The first step asks users for personal and card-related...

Mathew Maniyara | 28 Mar 2013 15:07:04 GMT

Contributor: Avdhoot Patil

New methods to entice victims into handing over their personal information are always being devised by the people behind phishing websites and the use of fake social networking applications is always popular.

During the past month, phishing on social media sites consisted of 8.6 percent of all phishing activity. Among the phishing sites targeting social media, 0.8 percent consisted of fake applications offering features such as free cell phone airtime, adult videos, video chatting, adult chatting, etc.

In March 2013, phishers used a fake Asian chat application on a phishing site hosted on a free web hosting site.

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Figure 1. Phishing page spoofing a social networking site

The phishing site spoofs a popular social networking site and is titled “Pakistani chat room - Pakistani girls...

Anand Muralidharan | 25 Mar 2013 14:47:12 GMT

Easter Sunday is one of the most important festivals in the Christian calendar and it is observed anywhere between March 22 and April 25 each year; this year it falls on March 31. Spam messages related to Easter have begun flowing into the Symantec Probe Network. As expected, most of the spam samples are encouraging users to take advantage of products offers, personalized letters, e-cards, as well as clearance sales of cars and replica watches. Clicking the URL will automatically redirect the user to a website containing some bogus offer.

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Figure 1. Spam product offer related to Easter

Spammers are also exploiting the event by sending casino spam email using the name "Easter bonnet". The Easter bonnet represents the tail-end of a tradition of wearing new clothes at an Easter festival.

The following spam sample provides...

Mathew Maniyara | 21 Mar 2013 18:06:11 GMT

Contributor: Ayub Khan

Symantec has been constantly monitoring phishing sites hosted on compromised Indian websites. In 2011, our study detailed these compromised sites and we did a similar study of phishing sites in 2012.

From August 2012 to November 2012, 0.11% of all phishing sites were hosted on compromised Indian websites. Phishers continue to target Indian sites across many disciplines to host their phishing sites. These Indian sites were classified in various categories. The most targeted sites were information technology (14.40%), education (11.90%), product sales and services (9.80%), industrial and manufacturing (7.30%), and tourism, travels and transport (5.80%). The figures for secure websites such as government, telecommunication, and ISP were low and at the bottom of the list. This offers evidence that phishers opt to target more vulnerable websites.
...

Samir_Patil | 19 Mar 2013 09:29:04 GMT

Contributor: Saurabh Farkade

The Vatican City has been in the news a lot in the past few weeks due to Benedict XVI’s resignation and the election of Pope Francis. Spammers have picked up on this opportunity for spreading malware.

Symantec Security Response has observed attackers distributing spam which leads users to a site hosting the Blackhole Exploit Kit. The good news is, Symantec customers are protected and this threat is detected as Blackhole Toolkit Website.

The spam email alleges to be from a well-known news channel. The following subject lines are used in this attack:

  • Subject: Opinion: Can New-Pope Benedict be Sued for the Sex Abuse Cases? - [REMOVED]
  • Subject: Opinion: New Pope, Vatican officials sued over alleged sexual abuse! - [REMOVED]
  • Subject: Opinion: New...
Samir_Patil | 15 Mar 2013 08:33:49 GMT

Contributor: Vivek Krishnamurthi

The Cheltenham Festival, also known as the National Hunt Meeting, is a popular horse racing event that occurs every year in March in the United Kingdom. The festival usually coincides with Saint Patrick's Day. This year, the festival is currently in progress and will end on March 15. A large amount of gambling takes place during the Cheltenham Festival, a fact that spammers seem to be well aware of as we are presently observing an increase in online gambling spam.

One particular sample of spam included instructions on how to register a free bet. The link provided in the message directs the user to a form where they can sign up and get a free bet worth up to £50.

Some of the email header information found in this spam campaign includes the following:

  • Subject: Bet on Cheltenham with the Best Odds!
  • ...
Anand Muralidharan | 14 Mar 2013 15:02:04 GMT

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]...