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Cybercrooks befuddled by Icelandic volcano name

How do you spell that, again?

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Scareware slingers have balked at using the name of the Icelandic volcano that this week has prevented planes flying across much of Europe as a theme for search engine manipulation campaigns because its name is simply too complicated.

Distributors of rogue security software can normally be relied upon to latch onto any item of news as a motif for attempts to make sure links to scareware portals appear prominently in the searches for likely terms via Google or other search engines. Links promising pictures of the spectacular storms around eruption volcanoes in Iceland would fit right into this strategy, but their appearance has been halted because no one agrees on how to spell the name of the volcano at the centre of the event.

Eyjafjallajökull, despite being arguably the biggest news story of the year so far, is simply too difficult to spell for most surfers, let alone virus writer types not known for their mastery of grammar and punctuation.

That's not to say black-hat SEO attacks riding on the coat tails of the volcanic ash clouds spreading over Europe have failed to materialise. But instead of using the name of the volcano, hackers have taken the more prosaic approach of using search terms such as "Iceland Volcano Images" as themes for their attacks, as explained in a blog post by Luis Corrons of Panda Security here. ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

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