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BitDefender's Spam Omelette 25 Spotlights Medical Spam Once Again as Top Spam Trend in Weekly Analysis of E-Threats

Week 25: The Word "WebMD" Dominates Spam Omelette in Spam Campaigns Sent by Canadian Pharmacy (May 14, 2009)

BUCHAREST, ROMANIA -- (Marketwire) -- 05/14/09 -- Medical spam has once again been identified as the top spam trend in Spam Omelette 25, BitDefender's weekly review on spam and the latest industry trends. Spam Omelette is part of MalwareCity.com, which is supported by BitDefender®, an award-winning provider of innovative anti-malware security solutions.

In week 25 of Spam Omelette, the top spam words include:

1. WEBMD -- Ranking first in this week's Spam Omelette, the word "WEBMD" has been identified by BitDefender researchers in unsolicited advertisements from Canadian Pharmacy. Unlike last week's spam wave that directed users to URLs built around Pfizer, this week's message sends users who click on the embedded links to domains made of the words "new," "pharmacy" and "nine." This type of spam uses only two distinct subject lines with multiple variations in the percentage the medicine is discounted. As with last week, the hyperlinks included in the message's body have been tampered with in order to direct the user to the Canadian Pharmacy website.

2. PRIVACY -- The word "PRIVACY" ranks second in Spam Omelette 25 and has been linked with the Canadian Pharmacy spam wave. The word "PRIVACY" has been identified in messages impersonating legitimate newsletters sent by Healthcentral.com. The newsletter has been tampered with and the embedded links have been redirected to the Canadian Pharmacy website.


3. MESSAGES -- Ranking third, the word "MESSAGES" has been identified in a Nigerian identity theft scam. The spam message promises a large sum of money if the user faxes a copy of his/her driver's license to a specific number. This leaves the user open to identity theft, prejudices to the banking balance and even incidents with international law enforcement organizations.

4. UNSUBSCRIBE -- Ranking fourth in this week's Spam Omelette is the word "UNSUBSCRIBE." Unsubscribe links are often tampered with to take the user directly to the advertised web page, or worse, to an unsubscribe form where personal data is collected and logged in a spam / identity theft database. Online medicine retailers such as Canadian Pharmacy and PowerGain+ are two of the largest spammers that rely heavily on unsubscribe links in order to deceive users.

5. MSN -- The word "MSN" ranks last on Spam Omelette 25 and was used in a less usual spam campaign this week. A Japanese spammer advertises the services of an electronics store online, including a heavily discounted iPhone. Orders are taken via two disposable e-mail addresses registered with both Yahoo and MSN.

To read the entire Spam Omelette # 25, please visit MalwareCity.com.

To create Spam Omelette, BitDefender analyzes approximately 7 million spam messages collected through BitDefender's worldwide network of "honey pots." A honey pot is an e-mail address that is only used to collect spam. The large number of analyzed messages and the global distribution of honey pots ensure reliable results.

The resulting map provides visual cues for understanding what the new trends in spam messages are, while providing significant insight to researchers on the current spam campaigns.

About BitDefender®

BitDefender is the creator of one of the industry's fastest and most effective lines of internationally certified security software. Since its inception in 2001, BitDefender has continued to raise the bar and set new standards in proactive threat prevention, emerging as the industry's anti-malware innovator. Every day, BitDefender protects tens of millions of home and corporate users across the globe -- giving them the peace of mind of knowing that their digital experiences will be secure. BitDefender solutions are distributed by a global network of value-added distribution and reseller partners in more than 100 countries worldwide. More information about BitDefender and its products are available at the company's security solutions press room. Additionally, BitDefender's www.malwarecity.com provides background and the latest updates on security threats helping users stay informed in the everyday battle against malware.

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