Warning on cut-price Vista scam

IT security firm, Sophos, is reminding computer users of the threat posed by image spam following a new campaign which purports to offer a cut-price edition of Microsoft Windows Vista.

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IT security firm, Sophos, is reminding computer users of the threat posed by image spam following a new campaign which purports to offer a cut-price edition of Microsoft Windows Vista.

In the latest widespread campaign seen by Sophos, image spammers are offering a bargain edition of Microsoft's new operating system, Windows Vista. The spam email claims that the recipient can save $319 (£164) by downloading Windows Vista.

Image spam, which uses a graphic embedded in an email rather than regular text, has grown in popularity amongst spammers attempting to communicate their marketing messages to internet users. Often image spam is used for promoting stock pump-and-dump scams or drugs to help with weight loss and sexual performance. But this most recent malware threat is being propagated by the Vista campaign.

"This widespread spam campaign carries all the hallmarks of a typical image spam,” said Graham Cluley, senior technology consultant for Sophos. The spammer has added speckled noise in the form of random pixels to make the graphic slightly different on each sending, and users are told to type in the name of the website rather than clicking on a link.

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