Posts Categorized: social engineering


Fake Firefox Update is a Social Engineering Triple Fail

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Where’s the work ethic, malware geniuses? If this latest example of shenanigans is the best you can deliver, you’re not even trying to generate convincing scams — or even something that makes sense — anymore. One of our Threat Research Analysts pointed me to a Web page hosting a fake update program for Firefox the other day, and the only thing it was useful for was a pretty good laugh. In replicating the Firefox “you’re now running…” page, the malware distributor managed only to build something that looks remarkably similar to a more sophisticated, and ultimately more plausible, scam we […]

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The Big Picture for 2011 Security Trends

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By Gerhard Eschelbeck As 2010 winds down, I wanted to pull out the crystal ball and talk for a moment about where the security industry seems to be heading in the coming year, and where we anticipate threats and targets. Mobile platforms: If you’re reading this, there’s a good chance you have either an iPhone, an Android phone, or a Blackberry in your pocket, case, or on your desk right now. If that’s true, then the data on that device is the next big target for criminals, and the newest front in the war on cybercrime. Users have embraced the […]

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Chinese Trojan Turns Infected PCs Into Web Servers

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A complex and elaborately conceived family of malware that originates in China installs the Apache Web server, as well as half a dozen keylogger and downloader payloads, disguised as components of legitimate apps. We and a few other antivirus vendors are calling this type of malware Taobatuo. It just so happens that I’ve been setting up a Windows virtual machine with the latest versions of Apache, MySQL, and PHP for an unrelated project. I hadn’t installed these apps onto a Windows box before, and Apache in particular is notoriously finicky about Windows installations, so after several days of trial and […]

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Rogue AV Spam Invades Multiply, Yahoo Mail

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While nowhere near the size of the mammoth Facebook, the social network Multiply is no slouch. Based in Boca Raton, Florida, the site is designed around not only sharing photos and videos with friends and family, but also a relatively novel concept called social shopping, which permits users of the site to shop together in a virtual marketplace, or even set up an Internet storefront. At last count, according to Multiply’s blog, the site has over 12 million users, which means that the Multiply Market may be one of the largest single shopping Web sites in Southeast Asia, where most […]

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Malware Threats: What Would Churchill Do?

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By Ian Moyse, EMEA Channel Director With Christmas fast approaching, (lest we forget the shops have kindly put all the Christmas goods out in September and early October again!) we can expect online attacks to increase as per their normal schedules, ramping up through the end of the year. With apologies to Sir Winston Churchill, never in the field of Internet conflict was so much harm done to so many by so few. For all the benefits the Internet provides our lives, no single technology has given so few criminals the ability to cheaply and easily target the many. We’ve […]

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Game Trojans’ Biggest Tricks in 2010

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By Andrew Brandt and Curtis Fechner It’s appropriate that this year’s Blizzcon, the two-day celebration of all things World of Warcraft, takes place during National Cyber Security Awareness Month. No other game is as heavily targeted by thieves as WoW, so we thought this would be as good a time as any to run down some of the malware threats that face gamers. 2010 has been a big year for Trojans that steal game passwords or license keys. The people who create malware targeting online games show no signs of relenting, nor are they laying down on the job. Innovation […]

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WoW Patch Brings Out the Malware Trolls

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Last week, Activision/Blizzard released a long-anticipated patch for its immensely popular game, World of Warcraft. While I don’t play this game, a number of our Threat Researchers do, and they’ve been on the lookout for shenanigans. Curtis Fechner found a doozy. The update comprises a major overhaul of many core systems within the game, affecting the graphics engine, game rules, player abilities, and also the interface. Many players use downloadable, player-created add-ons to further customize the appearance of the user interface; Patches as comprehensive as this one mean that many of the old add-ons simply won’t work until the add-on’s […]

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Hey Malware Guy: Just What the Heck Am I Supposed to Do With This?

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The Tacticlol downloader, responsible for a lot of infections over the past year, propagates in two ways: via drive-by downloads, and as a .zip archive attached to messages. Maybe the spam filtering companies finally caught on to the trick, or maybe the Tacticlol distributors are just trying to mix it up, but the latest sample to come over the transom has me scratching my head. Like most others, this sample came attached to an email made to look like a message that UPS would never send. Once again, the message tries to convince the recipient that the attached file is […]

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Your Federal Tax Payment Has Not Been Rejected

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It’s been more than a week since we started seeing spam email, supposedly sent by the EFTPS (Electronic Federal Tax Payment System, a division of the US Department of the Treasury), informing recipients in dire, bolded text that Your Federal Tax Payment ID: 01037513 has been rejected. I had hoped it would be a faded memory by now, but apparently it just won’t die. Spam, ladies and gentlemen. It’s a lie, cooked up in a criminal’s troubled mind, with the goal of convincing signficant numbers of people to click a link in the message. It’s a pretty contrived message, which […]

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Five Reasons You Should Always “Stop. Think. Connect.”

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Today’s the official kickoff for National Cyber Security Awareness Month, and the organizations supporting the event, including the National Cyber Security Alliance, the Anti-Phishing Working Group, and dozens of corporate citizens including Webroot, want you to protect your computer and your personal information. So they’ve come up with a three word campaign slogan they hope will become conventional wisdom for every Internet user: Stop. Think. Connect. Think of it as the 21st century equivalent of looking both ways before crossing the street. In my case, they’re preaching to the choir. For years, I’ve advocated that people treat everything they see […]

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