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Spammers Exploiting Wikipedia for Fake Pharma Products

Recently, Samir Patil, Security Researcher at Symantec, alleged that phishers are exploiting the popular website Wikipedia for their evil objectives, as reported by Infosecurity Magazine on May 19, 2011.

He stated that, presently they are noticing a new spam technique being utilized, which exploits the name of Wikipedia for the promotion of counterfeit pharmaceutical products.

He further added that, Symantec has found several spam e-mail messages that utilize a wiki template to endorse fake online pharmacies.

Patil stated that, the `Subject' line in such kind of attacks includes too much of randomization. The `From' header is either bogus or a compromised ISP account that provides a customized appearance to the e-mail.

In one instance quoted, Patil stated that, spammers are endorsing pharmacy products at an economical price utilizing a wiki-style layout. The web page poses to be that of `WikiPharmacy.'

Patil further added that, the amount of spam in this recent attack is quite high. Pointless to mention here is that, Wikipedia's fame is being exploited, considering its huge knowledge base and repute. He said that, in this instance, users have to be quite cautious not to furnish any sort of personal information on these bogus websites, as reported by Symantec on May 16, 2011.

Alarmingly, the issue, which has been highlighted by Samir as of now started during 2010, when, phishers began attacking Wikipedia with a huge volume of spam emails that directed innocent users to a fake Wikipedia website. However, during the last few days it has actually taken off into the mainstream.

He said that, a vigilant look at the "Subject" line is enough to recognize this kind of spam attack. Users should be highly cautious of these kinds of attacks and should not provide any personal information to such websites. Further, the security experts stated that, users should update their antivirus solutions frequently as anti-spam technologies recognize all these type of tricks and safeguard users from such irritating spam e-mails.

Finally, spam campaigns of the above mentioned kind once again brought into light the fact that, pharmaceutical spam is the major group across all spam categories that is circulated by cyber criminals and is significantly rising, with no visible end to it.

Related article: Spammers Continue their Campaigns Successfully

» SPAMfighter News - 5/30/2011

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