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Spamming at its Peak during Holidays or Popular Events

Spammers are taking advantage of the holiday season and the occurrence of major events towards making their e-mails appealing, as revealed in the Symantec intelligent Report published in the January edition, reports CRB on January 27, 2012.

The report reveals the existence of more than 10,000 unique domains compromised with a redirect script written in PHP and containing a reference to the New Year in the file name. These redirect scripts were hosted on compromised web links and included during the circulation of the spam e-mails.

Further analysis disclosed that cyber crooks were taking control of legal web server without much disturbing the main content of the website (in order to avoid or delay detection) and merely adding a simply PHP script named "happynewyear.php","new-year-link.php, new.year.link.php". The added script directs the host to a spammed pharmaceutical web site.

Widely-celebrated holidays and major events catch the attraction of any naïve user while increasing their chances of being infected easily. Taking advantage of this opportunity, criminals spread their hungry feet on the spammed websites and infect each and every innocent user visiting them, as acclaimed by Symantec during the analysis. The message forwarded to the user applies social engineering methods to attract the recipients towards opening the links. The recipients often receive mails under "friend_id" address.

According to Symantec, 419 or advance fee fraud scammers are also capable of using famous holidays, anniversaries, current advantage to their privilege. For instance, the occurrence of natural catastrophes like the shocking earthquake that took place in Japan last year and the Arab spring moments witness a sudden upsurge of the malware event.

Moreover, the report further anticipated that January 23, 2012 also observes the initiation of Chinese New Year (spring festivals) celebrations. Enthusiasm and propensity to celebrate this annual festival again brings along with it an increased chance of malware in air. The researchers of Symantec are also expecting to witness spammers taking the benefit of the forthcoming Valentine's Day. It is possible that spammers will take the full fledged advantage of the day's romantic connotation, usually to support drugs for erectile dysfunction, whereas malware writers are expected to make use of these widely renowned ideas and tempt the victims into reluctantly installing malware.

Thus, in a nutshell spammers are always looking for the right opportunity and the widely accepted events like Valentine's Day and the London Olympic Games are no exception to this rule. It is therefore of utmost importance for users to remain vigilant so that spamming could be controlled to some extent.

Related article: Spamming Keeps Taking On New Forms

» SPAMfighter News - 2/10/2012

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