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Koobface worm-flinging gangster linked to pharma spam ops

Login-slurping worm band broke up, moved onto 'solo projects' – infosec bod

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The group has split up for solo projects – Danchev

Danchev reckons the group has ceased to act collectively but is still up to no good.

"What are the Koobface gang up to in 2013? Collectively? Nothing on my radar. Individually, everyone's pursuing his own 'career path' with, for instance, key members behind the group currently involved in the adult content monetisation market segment within the underground economy," he said.

Two months ago the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) tried to take down EvaPharmacy. Guilmette described these attempts as "ineffective" and "lacklustre".

"My own research indicates quite unambiguously that in this most recent annual attempt of the FDA to take down this criminal organisation's websites. They seized no more than about a quarter of all of the domains that this group is currently actively using for their fake 'Canadian' pharmacies," he told El Reg.

The flaccid truth behind 'Canadian Pharmacy' spam

Outfits such as EvaPharmacy are collectively referred to as Canadian Pharmacy operations because the websites customers use are supposedly located in Canada. Actual order fulfilment can come from countries such as India and China, among others. Often the goods delivered to consumers of these services are placebos or adulterated with contaminates that pose a risk to users' health, as explained in more detail in our earlier analysis of the sleazy business of pushing penis pills here.

Businesses like EvaPharmacy are one of the main reasons why spam routinely deluges users' in-boxes.

"In the first instance, the EvaPharmacy people spam, massively, in order to drive traffic to various of their thousands of 'front end' web sites," Guilmette explained. "Once they have a customer at one of THOSE websites, he can shop and shop and add things to his virtual 'cart' but then, eventually, he will click on a button labeled 'Checkout'.  When he does that he will immediately be whisked away to an entirely different domain/website where his personal details, including his all-important credit card information is taken, you know, in order to complete the ordering process."

While the front-end domains are often compromised, portions of legitimate websites are bought and paid for so that the spammers can be sure that they control websites collecting payment for their wares, according to Guilmette. ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

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