Obama-themed malware on the rise

Within hours of settling the U.S. presidential election, spam using Barack Obama's name and image is used to entice people to download various Trojans.

One of the spam messages using Obama's election to entice people to download malware. Sophos

Within hours of settling the U.S. presidential election on Tuesday, spam seen worldwide began incorporating the name and image of Barack Obama, according to various security vendors. The U.K.'s Sophos reported 60 percent of all spam seen by the lab on Wednesday was in some way Obama related.

One piece of spam alleges to contain a link to video of Obama's acceptance speech. If you follow the video link within the e-mail message you will be taken to a Web page where you'll be asked to update your Adobe Flash Player with a file, adobe_flash9.exe, first. This is not an official Adobe update file and downloading this file may in turn infect your computer with a Trojan.

Sophos named the Trojan Mal/Behav-027. F-Secure named it W32/Papras.CL. Sunbelt Software also has a blog about this particular piece of spam.

Meanwhile, Websense is reporting a separate threat. An e-mail appears to be an interview with the new president elect. The e-mail features embedded links to a video site that attempts to install a file, BarackObama.exe. Downloading this file may infect your computer with a Trojan.

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About the author

    As CNET's former resident security expert, Robert Vamosi has been interviewed on the BBC, CNN, MSNBC, and other outlets to share his knowledge about the latest online threats and to offer advice on personal and corporate security.

     

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