August 2012 VIPRE Report: Scams, Mobile Malware and Privacy Breaches
GFI Software has released its VIPRE Report for August 2012 and the numbers show that in the past month cybercriminals have been busy launching email scams, malicious mobile applications, and phishing campaigns.
One of the biggest spam campaigns recorded in August revolved around Nationwide. Several variants of the bogus emails have been spotted, all of them attempting to lure internauts to websites where they were requested to hand over their account details.
Experts also noticed a lot of scam websites that relied on UK's Directgov logo in order to convince Internet users to sign up for all sorts of premium services.
Last, but certainly not least, mobile malware and shady app markets have left their print on the last month of summer.
And speaking of mobile malware, GFI researchers have analyzed the apps released by the Mitt Romney and Barack Obama presidential campaigns. They have discovered a number of privacy issues that most likely weren’t taken into consideration by most users when they installed the applications.
For instance, the Romney app not only collects information from the mobile device, but it also asks customers to sign in through their Facebook account. This allows it to post messages on the social media network on their behalf.
“The past month’s examples show that the world of smartphone applications has firmly become a battleground for scammers and malware writers, keen to take advantage of unsuspecting users,” Christopher Boyd, senior threat researcher at GFI Software, explained.
“Avoiding mobile malware often requires the same preventative tactics associated with traditional malware such as verifying the legitimacy of any unsolicited emails or hyperlinks before installing an unknown application or submitting personal information,” Boyd added.
“However, as we saw this month, the increased activity aimed at mobile devices doesn’t mean traditional attacks, such as desktop malware and email scams, have become any less of a threat.”
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