What do Halloween and a sent email have in common? Both can be equally frightening, according to Proofpoint (http://www.proofpoint.com), the leading provider of unified email security, archiving and data loss prevention solutions. With Halloween lurking around the corner, Proofpoint has identified some of the scariest email issues of 2008.
These blunders, attacks and mishaps have caused sleepless nights and financial peril for consumers, corporate executives, politicians and of course, email and IT administrators.
In no particular order, Proofpoint highlights some of this year's email mishaps below:
1.) Phishing Fiasco
In September, it was reported that cyber-criminals were launching fake sites for charities and asking unsuspecting consumers for donations to help in the hurricane disaster efforts. With any phishing site, people can be tricked and treated into revealing financial information and often discover the fraud after it is too late.
The Proofpoint Attack Response Center reports that "themed" phishing attacks continue with the latest threats preying on consumer concerns around the global financial crisis.
2.) Preying on Palin's Email
A hacker breached the personal Yahoo! account of vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin and revealed portions of its content on a site called Wikileaks. Security experts note that it can be fairly simple for a determined person to hack into a personal email account, but concerns have been raised about Palin using her personal email for business issues.(2) David C. Kernell, son of Tennessee State Representative Mike Kernell, was indicted earlier this month in the case.
3.) Obama's Unsightly Spam
A malicious spam email spread in September claiming to have a link to a sex video of Obama, but instead included spyware to steal sensitive data from the victim's computer.(3) Current events and sensational news headlines -- both real and fictional -- remain popular subject lines for phish and spam attacks because of their potential to lure recipients into opening the email or its attachments.
4.) Emails: Dead and Buried
Oracle Corp. failed to unearth CEO Larry Ellison's emails that were sought as evidence in a class-action lawsuit. According to the US District Judge Susan Illston, Oracle should have figured out a way to comply with the order to produce the information, which was issued in late 2006.(4)
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