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Malware in Fake Reports of President Obama’s Death

The security researchers of Trend Micro have discovered a malware movement on the famous Internet Messaging (IM) service in the last few days which tries to dupe the users on harmful links that circulate malware.

The security experts of the security firm, Loucif Kharouni, actually spotted the harmful messages, as per the blog post published by TrendLabs malware Blog on March 16, 2010.

It appears that the messages are aimed at French speaking Web users as the text before the links is written in French language and tells the users to click on the attached link. Some of these attached links made the users believe that they are watching a photograph related to an incident that reportedly killed the US President, Barack Obama. The used domain names resemble authentic sites such as YouTube and Facebook.

However, in actual fact, the attached links take the gullible users to harmful BUZUS variants identified by the security firm Trend Micro as TROJ_BUZUS.BTB and TROJ_BUZUS.BTA.

The security experts hence suggested users to ignore the instant messages that took them to President's death.

Expressing their opinions on the issues, the security experts stated that bogus celebrity death reports have appeared on the Web earlier as well. In past few years, there were rumors about Britney Spears' death, death of Will Farrel, Justin Timberlake, Michael Jackson (before he actually died), Sean Connery, etc. Considering the propagation of malware, celebrity death reports can take a leap if the hackers chose to pick up the trend.

Meanwhile, the security experts opined that this is not the first time when President Obama has become the target of hackers to circulate malware. At the time of his campaign for the US Presidency in 2008, there were many instances of cyber criminals taking advantage of Obama's news. Previous attacks were seen both during his election (both for spreading malware and pharmaceutical spam), and during his inauguration.

Further, it is to be noted that it is not Barack Obama only who has been a victim of malware campaign. Earlier, Bill Clinton, George Bush and Ronald Reagan have also been targeted by hackers to accomplish their vicious purposes, i.e. to spread malware.

Related article: Malware Authors Turn More Insidious

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