Hackers hide malware behind CNN headlines about Gaza conflict

Filed Under: Malware, Spam

Hackers love to jump on the tails of breaking news stories in their attempt to infect as many people as possible.

One of the latest examples we have seen is a campaign of spammed-out messages that claim to come from CNN. The emails claim to link to a CNN news report that contains graphic and striking video footage from Al Jazeera about the hostilities between Israel and Hamas.

However, if you click on the link you will actually be taken to a website hosting malicious code.

In this example the email pretends to have come from centre@cnn.com:

Email pretending to come from CNN

The whole world is watching the events in Gaza with concern, and naturally many people are getting their updates on the latest developments via the internet. Sadly, many people might be tempted to click on the link without thinking - risking putting their computer and the data contained upon it in danger.

Our advice would be to never trust an unsolicited email like this, but visit established sites like the BBC and CNN directly for your news-fix.

Of course, this isn't the first time that hackers have posed as a breaking news email from CNN. See an example from last August in the video below.

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About the author

Graham Cluley runs his own award-winning computer security blog, and is a veteran of the anti-virus industry having worked for a number of security companies since the early 1990s. Now an independent security analyst, he regularly makes media appearances and gives computer security presentations. Send Graham an email, subscribe to his updates on Facebook, follow him on Twitter and App.net, and circle him on Google Plus for regular updates.