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News

Live Skydrive exploited by spammers.

McAfee : 09 January, 2008  (Technical Article)
Online storage facility from Microsoft becomes latest target for spammers seeking new delivery mechanisms according to McAfee.
In an attempt to circumvent e-mail filters spammers have started abusing Microsoft's Windows Live Skydrive service to host spam links. On Monday night McAfee Avert Labs trapped thousands of spam messages that included a link to the Microsoft service. Clicking the link redirects to an online pharmacy service.

Windows Live Skydrive is an online storage service, launched in beta by Microsoft in August. Users can upload files and share those files with anyone via Web links. In the case of this spam campaign an HTML file was uploaded with a redirect to an online pill store. McAfee Avert Labs estimates that the spammers uploaded tens of thousands of such files to the Microsoft service.

'Services like Windows Live Skydrive are attractive to spammers for a number of reasons,' said Chris Barton, lead antispam researcher at McAfee Avert Labs. 'These services are free, provide unique, long-lasting Web links, host almost any kind of file and are relatively safe from blacklisting.'

The abuse of the Microsoft service isn't unique. Spammers regularly abuse online services, including storage services and blogs. Such use typically violates the usage terms, but spammers ignore those. Instead, McAfee Avert Labs recommends that service providers scan the content placed on their systems to weed out spam and malicious content.
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