Feeds

Phishers target frequent flyer schemes in Brazil

Phly-phishing phreebooters pillage air miles

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

Phishing fraudsters have latched on to a new target, with attacks designed to gain compromised access to frequent flyer accounts.

The well-established class of scam, which normally involves attempts to trick victims into handing over online banking login credentials to a bogus site, often as part of a supposed security check, has now been turned towards customers of Brazilian airline companies.

Bogus messages promise more points or a supposed prize but actually only offer a chance for crooks to capture login details. Access to compromised accounts is then traded as a currency on the digital underground. For example, one crook offered to rent access to a botnet for either $60 or 60,000 air miles. In other cases, air miles are offered in exchange for stolen credit card details.

Ultimately tickets are issued on a no-questions basis to people in on the scam, who are likely to be using a fake ID to travel.

Brazilian phishers running the scam have registered multiple domains that resemble those of airline firms. Some of the attacks rely on a first wave of Trojan infections that makes sure that surfers using compromised machines are redirected to bogus domains, net security firm Kaspersky Lab warns.

Local victims are beginning to come forward, complaining that their accounts have been plundered in order to issue tickets to unknown parties. One victim claims to have lost air miles valued at $7,600, a figure that seems rather high.

Phishing scams are most commonly targeted against PayPal, online banking accounts, or (less frequently) e-commerce website accounts. Attacks against air miles programmes are a much more recent innovation, with one of the first attacks of its kind appearing last month, targeted against the loyalty programme of a German airline. The scam used a variant of the SpyEye banking Trojan.

Kaspersky Lab analyst Fabio Assolini said the Brazilian attacks are technically similar but more highly evolved because they have led to the creation of a new currency in the local underground economy. A full write up of the scam can be found in a blog post by Assolini here. ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
FYI: OS X Yosemite's Spotlight tells Apple EVERYTHING you're looking for
It's on by default – didn't you read the small print?
Russian hackers exploit 'Sandworm' bug 'to spy on NATO, EU PCs'
Fix imminent from Microsoft for Vista, Server 2008, other stuff
Edward who? GCHQ boss dodges Snowden topic during last speech
UK spies would rather 'walk' than do 'mass surveillance'
Microsoft pulls another dodgy patch
Redmond makes a hash of hashing add-on
'LulzSec leader Aush0k' found to be naughty boy not worthy of jail
15 months home detention leaves egg on feds' faces as they grab for more power
China is ALREADY spying on Apple iCloud users, claims watchdog
Attack harvests users' info at iPhone 6 launch
Carders punch holes through Staples
Investigation launched into East Coast stores
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.