Trojan warning: Huge scandal with the USA Women's Gymnastics Team

Trojan warning: Huge scandal with the USA Women's Gymnastics Team

Summary: Cybercriminals are using false news about the USA Women's Gymnastics Team at the 2012 Olympics to push malware. Despite the claims, Gabrielle Douglas, who won a Gold Medal in Women's Gymnastics All Around, did not test positive for doping.

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Trojan warning: Huge scandal with the USA Women's Gymnastics Team

Scammers are pushing out malware by leveraging the hype around the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, and the potential for doping disgraces. Usually with the subject "Huge scandal with the USA Women's Gymnastics Team on the 2012 London Olympics" this spam e-mail claims Gabrielle Douglas, who won a Gold Medal in Women's Gymnastics All Around, faces a lifetime ban from the sport. This is not true, and the goal here is to infect your computer with malware.

The e-mail urges you to click on a supposed YouTube link to watch a video. Sophos, which first reported on this spam, detects the malware as Troj/Agent-XIK and Troj/JSRedir-IA.

Here's the e-mail's main body:

Recent Olympic gold medal winner, USA Women's Gymnastics winner Gabrielle Douglas, faces a lifetime ban after reportedly testing positive to banned diuretic furosemide. With details of the case still emerging, British Olympics Committee has ordered a suspension of the athlete until final results arrive.

View the video on youtube now

The word "now" is a link, but it doesn't take you to YouTube. Instead, it takes you to a fake YouTube page that prompts you to download a purported Adobe Flash plug-in to view the content.

"As always, remember to think twice before following links in unsolicited messages," a Sophos spokesperson said in a statement. "And, if you really want to keep up-to-date with the latest goings-on from the London Olympics, visit an established news website for the headlines - don't trust an email that arrives in your inbox out of the blue."

As a general word of caution, never blindly open attachments or links in e-mails. Also never forward e-mails, whether you think they are true or not. Spammers use e-mail chain letters to collect e-mail addresses for sending you junk mail as well as malware.

See also:

Topics: Security, Malware, Olympics 2012

Emil Protalinski

About Emil Protalinski

Emil is a freelance journalist writing for CNET and ZDNet. Over the years,
he has covered the tech industry for multiple publications, including Ars
Technica, Neowin, and TechSpot.

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  • without loss of generality

    >>As a general word of caution, never blindly open attachments or links in e-mails.
    A more general word of caution, never trust a proprietary insecure Microsoft Windows. Install GNU/Linux instead. Never watch youtube with Adobe flashplayer, use youtube-dl (installable from within most Linux distros) and use your favorite player to watch it, like mplayer. The latter combination would consume only 25% of the resources the Adobe flashplayer needs.
    eulampius