Debunking hoaxes and exposing scams since 2003!





Jump To: Example    Detailed Analysis   References

'You Have Received a Secure Message' Malware Emails


Jump To: Example    Detailed Analysis   References

Outline

Email purporting to be from a bank or other financial institution claims that you have received a secure message that you can read by opening an attached file.

Malware Emails
©Depositphotos.com/yupiramos



Brief Analysis

The email is not from your bank or any other legitimate organization and the attachment does not contain a message, secure or otherwise. In fact, the attached .zip file harbours a malicious file that, if opened, can install malware on the compromised computer. If you receive one of these emails, do not open any attachments or click on any links that it may contain.

   

Share







Bookmark and Share




Examples

From: Natioanl Australia Bank
Subject: You have received a secure message

You have received a secure message

Read your secure message by opening the attachment, SecureMessage.zip. You will be prompted to open (view) the file or save (download) it to your computer. For best results, save the file first, then open it.

If you have concerns about the validity of this message, please contact the sender directly. For questions please contact the National Australia Bank Secure Email Help Desk at [Removed].

First time users - will need to register after opening the attachment.

About Email Encryption - [Link Removed]

Subject: You have received a secure message
You have received a secure message

Read your secure message by opening the attachment, SecureMessage.zip. You will be prompted to open (view) the file or save (download) it to your computer. For best results, save the file first, then open it.

If you have concerns about the validity of this message, please contact the sender directly. For questions please contact the [ bank name] Secure Email Help Desk a [.....].

First time users - will need to register after opening the attachment.

About Email Encryption - [Link to bank security notice]




Detailed Analysis

Malicious emails like the examples shown above are currently being distributed by Internet criminals. The emails claim that users have received a secure message. The messages inform recipients that they can read the secure message by opening an attached .zip file. To further the illusion of legitimacy, links in some of the emails point to genuine security information on the targeted entity's real website. The emails also use spoofed addresses to make it appear that the messages really do originate from the targeted company.

The financial institution or company named in the scam emails varies considerably. One recent version claims to have been sent by Australia's National Bank. Earlier versions have named the Bank of America, the Commonwealth Bank, and several other financial entities around the world. Another version falsely identified networking company Cisco as the sender.

Those who fall for the ruse and unzip the attached file will then be presented with a file named 'SecureMessage.exe' or 'SecureMessage.scr'. If they proceed to open this file, they will install malware on their computers. This malware may steal information, make contact with a remote server and download and install further malware.

If you receive one of these malware emails, do not open any attachments that it may contain. Do not follow any links in the message.

   

Share







Bookmark and Share


Last updated: September 3, 2015
First published: December 13, 2012
By Brett M. Christensen
About Hoax-Slayer

References
Malware Threat Articles






Latest Hoax-Slayer Articles