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Feds warn of malware in fake credit union advisory

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A government agency is warning all federally insured credit unions to be on the lookout for a bogus alert delivered through the US mail that includes two CDs containing malware.

The fake alert purports to come from Michael E. Fryzel, the chairman of the National Credit Union Administration and warns of phishing and vishing attacks that attempt to steal members' account credentials. It then requests that officials review training materials contained on the CDs. Ironically, the warning about the bogus alert was also issued by the NCUA.

The warning comes as banks, credit unions, and small businesses are increasingly coming under online attack. According to this article in The Washington Post, crime gangs located in Eastern Europe have touched off a wave of attacks that have siphoned millions of dollars out of the online accounts and small- and medium-sized businesses. The article cited a confidential alert from an industry group reporting a "significant increase in funds transfer fraud involving the exploitation of valid banking credentials."

A separate report from IDG News reported that the FBI is trying to find out who sent West Virginia Governor Joe Mahchin five Hewlett-Packard laptops that may contain malware. State officials in Vermont and Wyoming have also received similar unsolicited orders.

It's not yet known if any of the machines contain malware, but the mysterious circumstances under which they appear have aroused suspicions. ®

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