Get Ready for Election Spam

Friday, October 12, 2012 @ 02:10 PM gHale


No matter what side of the aisle you fall on, this year’s election remains a vital part of the future of the U.S. and cyber scammers know that.

That is why there is now a flury of malicious, election-tinged spam beginning to hit would be voters interested in the outcome of the election.

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In the wake of the presidential debate between President Barack Obama and Republican nominee Mitt Romney, it appears the spam floodgates have opened.

Some of those spam email messages, the ones that look as if they’re trying to gauge users’ interest in the candidates, are really leading to sites hosting the Blackhole Exploit kit code, said Websense’s Gianluca Giuliani.

The post claims attackers are using thousands of emails containing malicious .pdf, .jar and .exe files to dupe users into compromising their systems.

The post shows a fake email sent by “CNN Breaking News,” yet by hovering over one of the links, it’s easy to see users will be sent to a site hosting obfuscated BlackHole exploit kit 2.0 code.

Developers use various methods to get users to click through to their malicious code, but the election formula is pretty effective.

On Trend Micro’s Security Intelligence Blog, Technical Communications Specialist Jonathan Leopando talked about how attackers using politically charged words to lure users to sites have been successful.

After analyzing scams using Romney and Obama’s name over the last three months, Obama emerged victorious – at least when it comes to triggering bad URLs. Obama garnered 26,559 malicious hits while Romney got 4,519. 79 percent of those “Obama” mentions were from diseased vector URLs, while 11 percent came from spam. That compares to 20 percent of bad Romney links and 64 percent Romney diseased vector URLs.



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