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Phishing E-mails Targeting Microsoft Outlook Users

Cyber security experts at the security firm, Sophos, have warned Microsoft Outlook users to be careful about phishing e-mails, which are presently circulating on the web.

The rouge e-mail subject reads: "Notification from Microsoft Outlook - please read". Sophos stated that, it comes from support@microsoftoutlook.com, which provides it an authentic look.

The attached message in the rouge e-mail notifies readers that, they should download and open attachment to reconfigure their Microsoft Outlook information again.

As per the Sophos, if any user opens the attached file, he will be redirected to a webpage that urges the user to reveal his/her username and password and any other information, which could be easily abused to steal their identity or use their private banking information.

Commenting on this particular scam, Graham Cluley, the Senior Technology Consultant at Sophos informed that, if any user comes across uninvited e-mails that urge them to take immediate action to re-activate an account, then they must ignore the e-mail and should never download any unfamiliar attachments, as reported by the Security News Daily on June 20, 2011.

Cluley added that, users must make it tough for the hackers to break into their online accounts, as reported by the Naked Security on June 20, 2011.

Due to the harmful effects of this particular scam, security experts advised Outlook users to remain careful and alert. Besides, they stated that, Outlook carries some protection tips from phishing e-mails. They added that, if enabled, the links in identified phishing attempts will fail to work.

Sadly, it is not the first time that Microsoft outlook has been hit by hackers. Reportedly, a similar scam hit Microsoft Outlook users back in June 2009 and the alert was reportedly raised by security experts of Trend Micro.

Lastly, the Sophos stated that, it is due to the unfortunate phishing attack like the above mentioned one that phishing is evolving and becoming more refined. Their verdict is supported by data released by Symantec in its "State of Spam & phishing Report" for June 2011, as per which phishing landscape rose by 6.67% during April (2011) to May (2011).

Related article: Phishing With A Redirector Code

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