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Issue 117 - August 2011 - Page 14

'Uniform Traffic Ticket' Malware Email

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Outline
Email claiming to be a notification of a traffic ticket for speeding from the New York State Police urges the recipient to print out the ticket contained in an attached file and post it to the Town Court.



Brief Analysis
The message is not from police and the attachment does not contain a speeding ticket. The attachment contains malware.

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Detailed analysis and references below example.



Last updated: 6th July 2011
First published: 6th July 2011
Article written by Brett M. Christensen
About Brett Christensen and Hoax-Slayer


Example
From: Police agency Subject: UNIFORM TRAFFIC TICKET

New York State ó Department of Motor Vehicles
UNIFORM TRAFFIC TICKET
POLICE AGENCY
NEW YORK STATE POLICE

Local Police Code

THE PERSON DESCRIBED ABOVE IS CHARGED AS FOLLOWS


Time: 7:25 AM
Date of Offense: 07/02/2011

IN VIOLATION OF
NYS V AND T LAW Description of Violation:
SPEED OVER 55 ZONE
TO PLEAD, PRINT OUT THE ENCLOSED TICKET AND SEND IT TO TOWN COURT, CHATAM HALL., PO BOX 117


Email incudes an attached file named "Ticket.zip"




Detailed Analysis
This email, which purports to be from the New York State Police, claims that the recipient has been charged with speeding in violation of New York State law. The message advises recipients wishing to plead the case to print out a traffic ticket contained in an attached file and mail it to the Town Court at Chatam Hall.

However, the message is certainly not from New York State Police and the attachment does not contain a speeding ticket. In fact, the attachment contains a trojan that, if opened, can install itself on the userís computer. Typically, such trojans are able to contact a remote server and download further malware that can steal information from the infected computer and allow criminals to control it from afar.

In this case, the criminals responsible for the malware emails obviously hope that their message will panic people into opening the attachment without due care and attention. A great many of the people who receive one of these widely distributed emails will not have even been in New York on the date specified. Thus, at least some, fearing a major error by the police, are likely to immediately open the attachment with the intention of sending off the supposed ticket and pleading their innocence. Such simple - but often quite effective - social engineering tricks have proved very useful for scammers over many years.

Police departments are very unlikely to send people traffic violations via unsolicited emails. This tactic is similar to another current malware campaign in which recipients are instructed to open an attached file in an email purporting to be from the IRS.

Be very cautious of any unsolicited email that claims to be from police or a government department and instructs you to open an attached file or follow a link. Such tactics are commonly used by criminals intent on distributing malware or tricking recipients into divulging personal and financial information via phishing scams.

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References
IRS 'Unable To Process Your Tax Return' Malware Email
Phishing Scams - Anti-Phishing Information



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Issue 117 Start Menu

Pages in this month's issue:
  1. FB Security "Hacker" and "Virus" Warning
  2. Hoax: HIV Infected Blood In Pepsi
  3. Advance Fee Scam - Facebook 2011 Sweepstakes Online Lottery
  4. Hugh Hefner is NOT Dead - R.I.P. Hugh Hefner Facebook Virus Warning Hoax
  5. Wrench 3D Printing Viral Video
  6. Fake News Report Falsely Claims Mark Zuckerberg Arrested for Child Molestation
  7. Shutdown Cell Phone Virtual Kidnapping Scam Warning
  8. Facebook 'Virus' Warning - Girl in a Plaid Skirt
  9. Credit Card Overdue Malware Email
  10. Mobile Phone Misinformation - XALAN and #90 Hoax
  11. Hoax Warning: Lost Child Lure - 'New Way for Gang Members to Rape Women
  12. Hoax: Nadia Comaneci's Gymnast Granddaughter Viral Video
  13. 'Facebook Has Sent You a Message' Pharmacy Spam
  14. ''Uniform Traffic Ticket' Malware Email
  15. IRS 'Unable To Process Your Tax Return' Malware Email
  16. Nestle Banana Baby Food Recall Warning
  17. Hoax: Facebook to Start Charging This Summer - Facebook Icon Will Turn Blue
  18. Hoax - Nagasaki Arch Survives Both Atomic Bomb and Tsunami
  19. Alert From Facebook Security Team Phishing Scam
  20. Dollar Bills Stamped With 'NO GOD BUT ALLAH'