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Watch For Scams Newsletter. Osama bin Laden's death used by Scammers
May 05, 2011
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Osama bin Laden's death used by Scammers

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Osama bin Laden's death used by Scammers

Scammers are using the killing of Osama bin Laden to send out malicious software and spam to unwary Internet users.

Scammers are sending out emails and spreading Facebook posts that claim to be videos or photos of the dead bin Laden. They are not. But by clicking the links, you can download computer viruses that steal personal information or infect your computer.

One spam email contains a link to bogus photos and videos claiming to be from CNN Mexico. Instead, it directs you to a scam site designed to look like the real thing but created to steal passwords.

Some Facebook users also fell victim to fake bin Laden links that then spread the links to their friends' pages on the site.

On Wednesday, President Barack Obama said he has decided not to release photos of the dead bin Laden because they could incite violence and create national security risks for the U.S., however that didn't stop Internet scammers from spreading fake, doctored photos to lure people into giving away their personal information or downloading malicious software or "malware" which can embed itself in computers and spread to your users' contact lists, thereby infecting the systems of associates, friends and family members.

Remember not to open unsolicited (spam) e-mails, including clicking links contained within those messages. Even if the sender is familiar, you should exercise due diligence.

Check you have up-to-date firewall and anti- virus software running on your machines to detect and deflect malicious software. You are advised to do the following:

Adjust the privacy settings on social networking sites you frequent to make it more difficult for people you know and do not know to post content to your page. Even a "friend" can unknowingly pass on multimedia that's actually malicious software.

Do not agree to download software to view videos. These applications can infect your computer.

Read e-mails you receive carefully. Fraudulent messages often feature misspellings, poor grammar and nonstandard English.

If you have been a victim of this type of scam or any other Cyber crime, you can report it to the IC3 website at: www.IC3.gov. The IC3 complaint database links complaints for potential referral to the appropriate law enforcement agency for case consideration. Complaint information is also used to identity emerging trends and patterns.

Remember - always watch for scams!

Steve

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