Web scammers playing on swine flu fears
April 30, 2009 02:56pm
" COMPUTER scammers are feeding off swine flu fears to entice people to download viruses or purchase bogus products.
Emails titled “Are you worried about flu outbreak?” and "Global
panic as swine flu spreads to Europe" are luring people into clicking
on links or opening attachments that could be malicious, computer
security company PC Tools said.
PC Tools spokeswoman Magida Ezzat
said cyber criminals were also using the celebrity angle, with email
titles such as "Swine flu in Hollywood" and "Madonna caught swine flu".
"Hackers will play on any big event or celebrities and we've
recently seen a lot of scams around the financial crisis as well as the
inauguration of Barack Obama," she said.
The spam emails usually contain a link to a malicious website or
what appears to be a PDF file, but is in fact a program that tries to
steal user names and passwords.
F-secure.com reports an explosion in the registration of flu-related domain names and says many are opportunistically trying to sell suspicious swine flu protection or treatment products.
Ms Ezzat advised people looking for information on swine flu to stick to reputable websites such as the Federal Government's health website.
People should also keep their anti-virus software updated to protect them from falling prey to scams, she said.
Source: Web scammers playing on swine flu fears