Sick spammers exploit natural disasters and curiosity

Opinion

Sick spammers exploit natural disasters and curiosity

There is something rather sick in the way that spammers use events, including natural disasters, to dump rubbish in user's inboxes.

When most people in Russia might have been worried about fires and heat waves spammers decided to use that opportunity to promote air conditioners.

The craze for Paul the World Cup result predicting Octopus is still being taken advantage of according to the latest Symantec State of Spam and Phishing report.

But if you thought you could see those spam messages coming the blank subject line technique is proving to be the most popular technique currently being used to lure users into opening emails they might try to avoid.

Taking the tongue out of the cheek for a while, the point here is that while most of us are heads down trying to get through the current recession and talk of double dip, there are some trying to add to the misery and load the inbox with spamming nonsense.

Symantec is already warning that next year's cricket world cup is being exploited and presumably the phrase 'double dip' will be one used by phishing folk over the next few months.

If spam didn't have security concerns and impact bandwidth the temptation would be to skim through an analysis of that market but what the Symantec findings show is that it is a widespread and serious problem where the unscrupulous target the innocent and that is no laughing matter.

This was first published in August 2010

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