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Viagra spam shop live on Twitter for a month

Repeated complaints lead to no action

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

Canadian Pharmacy spammers have set up shop on Twitter, staying online for weeks despite complaints from a leading security firm that would normally prompt action.

The micro-blogging account @canadianshop features nothing beyond links to unlicensed sites selling Viagra and other prescription medicines - just the sort of thing that would normally bring down a ban-hammer in short order. Yet despite repeated complaints by IT security firm Sophos for more than a week nothing has been done.

The account has been live on Twitter for the last month. In contrast to the site's prolonged inaction, URL shortening service bit.ly has blocked most (though not all) of @canadianshop's custom links. "When bit.ly shuts one down, the bad guys can just create another one," a Sophos spokesman explained.

Many accounts on Twitter push out spamvertised links but @canadianshop is unusually obvious about it. "It has Canadian pharmacy wallpaper and explicit tweets saying what it's selling," the spokesman said.

"This isn't someone linking to something that pretends to be saucy content and then takes you to an online drugs store. Nor is it accounts that have been hacked and are spamming out pharma links. This is blatant promotion of pharmacy sites that are normally advertised via email spam, in order to sell Viagra et al." ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

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