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Fresh E-Mail Assault Aiming at Defense Sector Staff Detected

Investigators at F-Secure the Finnish anti-virus firm state that they've identified one fresh e-mail assault, which apparently aims at employees of the defense sector.

Reportedly, it was during the 2nd-week of July 2011 that the assault was detected and since then it's continuing as it entices recipients with the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) Strategic and Tactical Missile Systems Conference of 2012, claim the investigators.

Importantly, the AIAA Strategic and Tactical Missile Systems Conference is one popular conference for the defense sector categorized as SECRET.

Giving more information about the said assault, Mikko Hypponen Chief Research Officer at F-Secure stated that the scam electronic mails served a malevolent PDF document, which if viewed inside Adobe Reader, abused one familiar JavaScript security flaw as also planted an executable named Ismm.exe. The executable was a backdoor, which linked up with the remote scammer, Hypponen explained. F-secure.com published this on July 18, 2011.

Also as per F-Secure, following the abuse, an innocuous PDF file helping to summon papers revealed its content so the user got distracted and thereby avoided arousing doubt. Softpedia.com published this on July 18, 2011.

And while F-Secure isn't aware about the assault's precise target, still from an analysis of its characteristics the firm thinks the target is possibly a defense sector military supplier.

Actually during such assaults, the fraudulent electronic mails are created like being sent from organizations/individuals the targets rely on like their colleagues or bosses.

Meanwhile, a Virus Total scan of the PDF archive revealed merely 15 from the total 43 AV engines as spotting it, thereby suggesting the detection rate as low. Consequently according to the investigators, the assault features as highly perilous for the defense sector staff.

Conclusively, it's because of the above kinds of malware scams, which have resulted in an enormous increase in malware online, remark the F-Secure investigators. The statement receives further support from statistics that 'Avast' a security company recently published indicating that 60.2% of Adobe Reader users currently work on the application's flawed version, while merely 40% of such users run the latest Adobe Reader X alternatively are wholly patched.

Related article: Fark.com Files Suit against Suspected Hacker from Fox13

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