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Spam Mails With Bogus Hallmark E-Cards Doing The Rounds

Researchers from MX Lab a security company caution netizens that a fresh surge of spam mails are posing as messages from Hallmark delivering Christmas cards.

The fake electronic mails display the header, "1st Christmas Card." Also, their sender's address is spoofed such that the e-mails seem be from card@hallmark.com. An identical e-mail template of Hallmark is further used which copycats the company's online site.

Moreover, accompanied with 2 animated beavers' graphics, the message conveying Christmas greetings tells the recipient that he has been selected for getting the Snow Fairy's good fortune during the complete year ahead. But to get that, he has to pass the e-mail to seven others in 60 seconds, so he needs to rush up.

State security analysts, from this e-mail it appears that spammers do not just distribute these bogus messages by themselves, but they even attempt at socially engineering readers into doing it on their behalf.

An attached ZIP archive, named SnowFairy.zip has a 610 KB-sized executable file called SnowFairy.exe, state the investigators at MX Lab. The executable in reality is a PC Trojan that solely downloads scareware.

Stated the researchers that most often threats of the above kind were camouflaged with an e-card that apparently Hallmark sent. As the year approached its end, more of the threats could be anticipated to emerge, they added. Blog.mxlab.eu reported this on December 13, 2010.

In addition the researchers remarked that it was very convenient to use e-cards for wishing family and friends greetings, but online crooks crafted bogus editions and added to them links that produced malware like PC viruses rather than good tidings as the above instance showed. Luckily, MX Lab detected the latest spam campaign.

MX Lab's researchers point out that scams are still cyber-criminals' top business as they look for exploiting open hearts along with freely-available wallets at the time of holidays. So people surfing on the Web for e-cards, travel packages and gifts should be wary of common scams towards protecting themselves from theft when festival is just round the corner, they advise. Users must exercise caution when opening e-cards that are delivered into their inboxes.

Related article: Spam Scam Bags a Scottish Connection

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