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News

Airline spam contains zipped Trojan

Sophos : 16 January, 2009  (Technical Article)
Travellers advised not to open attachment on bogus emails which appear to come from Northwest Airlines
IT security and control firm Sophos is advising email users to be wary of messages in relation to air travel as a widespread malicious spam campaign claiming to relay information pertaining to non-existent credit card transactions continues to grow. These new emails, masquerading as communication from Northwest Airlines - a subsidiary of US carrier Delta Airlines - claim that the recipient has registered an account with the company's online ticket service and that their credit card has been charged.

The attached ZIP file, titled 'Your_ETicket.zip', does not contain a genuine electronic ticket and neither have the user's credit card been charged. Instead, the file, analysed by SophosLabs, contains a Trojan horse - Troj/Agent-IPS - designed to steal information or allow hackers to secretly access the victim's computer.

'This technique of posing as an air ticket isn't a new one - cybercriminals tried a similar scam in the run-up to Christmas, as well as using similar tactics at the height of the holiday season in 2008," said Graham Cluley, senior technology consultant at Sophos. "The hackers are hoping that computer users will be so affronted at being charged for an airline flight that they haven't booked, that they will open the attachment without thinking. Anyone who makes flight bookings online should be careful when checking their inboxes for correspondence and wary of opening attachments - always think before you click, or you could be putting your computer at risk of infection."

Sophos recommends that all computer users exercise caution when opening unsolicited emails, and ensure they are fully defended against attacks, including spam, phishing and malware.
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