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Malware 'Court Hearing Notice' Pretends to be From Orrick



Outline

Email purporting to be from law firm Orrick claims that you must attend a hearing in the Ohio Fourth District Court of Appeals. The email urges you to click a link to access and study a 'plaint note' prior to the court appearance.


© Depositphotos.com/ feedough



Brief Analysis

The email is not from Orrick or any other legitimate law firm. It is a criminal ruse designed to trick you into infecting your computer with malware. It is just one in a series of similar 'court appearance' malware emails that have been distributed in recent months. If you receive one of these emails, do not click any links or open any attachments that they contain.

   






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Example

Orrick

Court hearing notice
As a defendant you have been scheduled to attend the hearing in the Ohio Fourth District Court of Appeals.

Hearing date: 28 January 2015
Hearing time: 9:00 a.m.
Hearing subject: illegal use of software
Prior to the court thoroughly study the plaint note in the attachment to this mail.
Sincerely,
Court agent,
Robert Benjamin


Detailed Analysis

'Court Hearing Notice' Email Claims to be From Law Firm Orrick

According to this 'Court Hearing Notice', which purports to be from the international law firm Orrick, you have been scheduled to attend a hearing in the Ohio Fourth District Court of Appeals.

The hearing is supposedly related to the illegal use of software. The message features the Orrick logo and includes a date and time for the hearing.

The message advises you to click a link to 'thoroughly study the plaint note' related to the hearing.

Email is Not From Orrick - Email Opens Malware Website

However, the email is certainly not from Orrick or any other legitimate legal entity.

If you click the link in the email, you will be taken to a compromised website that contains malware. If your browser and operating system are not among those targeted by the scammers, you may see a notice claiming that your computer is not compatible with the download.

Otherwise, the malware will be downloaded to your computer. Once installed, this malware may download further malware and join your computer to a botnet.

Just One in a Series of Court Notice Malware Emails

This message is just one in a series of malware emails that claim that you must appear in court. The messages all try to trick recipients into installing malware, either by opening an attachment or by clicking a link to go to a website.

Legitimate law firms and court officials are very unlikely to send you an unsolicited email claiming that you must appear in court and should click a link or open an attachment for further details.

Be wary of any such message that comes your way. If you are concerned, you should contact the law firm or court directly to check. However, do not use contact details supplied in the email, as they will just take you back to the scammers.

Instead, find contact details via a phone directory or web search.



Last updated: January 15, 2015
First published: January 15, 2015
By Brett M. Christensen
About Hoax-Slayer

References
What is a 'botnet'?.
'Notice to Appear in Court' Malware Emails