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Saturday, January 28, 2012

Symantec Security Response: Spammers on the Lookout for Valentine’s Day Bargain Hunters

Spammers are on the lookout for Valentine’s Day bargain hunters, so be vigilant if you’re looking for great deals online!


Symantec researchers are observing a surge of spam as Valentine’s Day approaches. Unbelievable discounts on jewellery, dinners, and expensive gift articles are key themes for Valentine’s Day related spam. Other popular fake promotions include online pharmaceuticals, fake e-cards, gift cards, chocolates, and flowers, all designed with the goal of capturing a user’s personal and financial details.


In one spam sample, users are lured to purchase silver, gold, and platinum jewellery with promises of additional free gifts. By clicking on the link, the user is redirected to a page asking for the user’s personal information in order to receive the gift that they have selected.

Social network spam is also not far behind other information-stealing techniques when it comes to capturing a user’s personal data. There are many fake applications targeting Valentine’s Day that direct the user to a survey site. Below is an example of one such fake application.

For more information, please proceed to Symantec’s Security Response blog post here.

Symantec advises Internet users to adopt the following best practices to avoid falling prey to phishing attacks:

  • Do not open unsolicited emails from unknown sources.
  • Do not click on any links included in email messages. Instead, type the link in the address bar.
  • Do not open attached files that claim to be Valentine’s greeting cards, e-cards, etc.
  • Buy products from authentic websites that are protected by SSL certificates.
  • Install effective antivirus and antispam solution software.

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