Malware Peddlers Target Michael Jackson Mourners

Dennis Faas's picture

While millions of people clamored to hear late-breaking news and updates on the sudden passing of the Prince of Pop, hackers and online deviants around the world rushed to their computers to spread spam and malware to an endless sea of vulnerable mourners.

Hundreds of cases of malicious messages masquerading as information about Jackson's death were reported Thursday night. The emails claimed to have contained "vital information" about the circumstances surrounding his death, while also asking users to respond in order to become privy to the "secret" details. (Source:

Questionable Links Appeared within Hours

The classic approach to online fraud also ran rampant on Thursday. Suspicious messages appeared in a matter of hours, offering email-based links that claimed to contain exclusive videos and photos of Michael Jackson.

These messages also appeared to have YouTube videos embedded inside. However, attempting to follow these links would launch a malware attack on your computer within seconds. (Source:

While damaging in their own right, these attacks paled in comparison to the virus that went around and locked down a number of PCs, terminating almost any application before Windows was able to open it!

Other programs were said to install spyware and even the dreaded return of the Koobface virus was observed.

Web Safety Procedures Still Apply

Security experts are warning users to follow standard web safety procedures to combat these attacks. These include: deleting suspicious-looking emails, avoiding links in unfamiliar messages and restricting your web surfing behavior to reputable destinations for all breaking news and updates.

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