Feeds

Pump-and-dump scammers debut MP3 spam

Duff note

3 Big data security analytics techniques

Stock spammers have abandoned PDF files and image spam with a new campaign featuring MP3 files.

The audio files pose as music from stars such as Elvis Presley and Fergie, but actually contain a monotone voice encouraging punters to invest in an obscure Canadian company.

The MP3 files are being widely spammed in emails that often contain no subject line or message body, net security firm Sophos reports. Some of the filenames used include hurricanechris.mp3, allforone.mp3, carrieunderwood.mp3, elvis.mp3, baby.mp3, fergie.mp3, and bbrown.mp3.

The female (apparently British) voice on the MP3 file, recorded at low bit-rate and randomly altered to avoid detection by anti-spam filters, seeks to attract interest in Exit Only, a Canadian firm that runs a website marketplace for new and used motors. Sophos has posted a 30 second example of the stock spam MP3 file here.

Quite who would respond to such an unsolicited pitch is hard to fathom. Anti-virus firms advise users to block MP3 files in email.

The Exit Only spam campaign is the latest variant in pump-and-dump scams, a type of fraud that now accounts for 25 per cent of all junk emails compared to just 0.8 per cent in January 2005, according to Sophos.

Pump-and-dump scams are email campaigns that seek to encourage armchair investors to sink their cash into particular firms' stock.

The goal is to quickly inflate interest in low-value stock with bogus insider info in order to ramp up share prices and sell at a profit before the inevitable crash and burn. Meanwhile, those duped are left holding possibly worthless shares. ®

3 Big data security analytics techniques

More from The Register

next story
Obama allows NSA to exploit 0-days: report
If the spooks say they need it, they get it
Samsung Galaxy S5 fingerprint scanner hacked in just 4 DAYS
Sammy's newbie cooked slower than iPhone, also costs more to build
Putin tells Snowden: Russia conducts no US-style mass surveillance
Gov't is too broke for that, Russian prez says
Snowden-inspired crypto-email service Lavaboom launches
German service pays tribute to Lavabit
Mounties always get their man: Heartbleed 'hacker', 19, CUFFED
Canadian teen accused of raiding tax computers using OpenSSL bug
One year on: diplomatic fail as Chinese APT gangs get back to work
Mandiant says past 12 months shows Beijing won't call off its hackers
Call of Duty 'fragged using OpenSSL's Heartbleed exploit'
So it begins ... or maybe not, says one analyst
Arts and crafts store Michaels says 3 million credit cards exposed in breach
Meanwhile, Target investigators prepare for long process in nabbing hackers
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.