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Security Protection - Harry Waldron (CS)

Security Best Practices, Breaking News, & Updates

Storm Worm - Avoid Tabloid headlines in Spam messages

Storm The social engineering tactices used by the Storm worm continue to be well engineered.  These deceptive messages attempt to trick folks into selecting malicious links that automatically download malware to vulnerable systems.   

Storm Worm - Avoid Tabloid headlines in Spam messages

Lightning QUOTE: No, spammers haven’t hired a bunch of former supermarket tabloid writers. They’re just doing what they do best – exploiting human nature.

The Storm worm is the Internet's version of Broadway’s “Phantom of the Opera” -- the longest running hit show around. Storm first appeared in January 2007, teasing users with a headline about deadly storms that hit Europe -- "230 dead as storm batters Europe," it said, offering a link to a full story. Clickers found themselves infected with the Storm worm.

Storm was an immediate hit for the hackers, who managed to trick hundreds of thousands of recipients into clicking on the booby-trapped link. That enabled them to build an enormous network of hijacked computers, called a botnet, which they use to send out more spam or commit other Internet crimes.

There have been hundreds of Storm variants since the first one, sent by a loosely affiliated gang of computer criminals. Some estimates say that up to 10 million PCs have been infected with Storm at one time or another.

But in April, Microsoft updated its malicious software removal tool, much to the chagrin of the hackers. About four-fifths of the vast Storm network was cut off, said Paul Wood, a security researcher at MessageLabs.

Comprehensive list of dozens of headlines from Message Labs


Frank Paolino said:

They are attention grabbing. Being in the IBM world, this one caught my attention:

"IBM to file for bankruptcy". But the body had some Andre Agassi headline, which really did not make any sense:

# August 6, 2008 1:17 PM