Fake Internet postcards linked to most prevalent U.S. computer virus

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Washington, July 27 (ANI): A University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) expert has warned that fake Internet postcards circulating through e-mail inboxes across the world are carrying links to the virus called Zeus Bot

Gary Warner, director of computer forensics at the UAB, says that Zeus Bot has been named America's most pervasive computer Botnet virus by Network World magazine, reportedly infecting 3.6 million U.S. computers.

"These fake postcards ask users to click and download to view the contents, and as soon as that click is made the Zeus Bot malware has infected their computers. Once on a user's computer, Zeus Bot will give cyber criminals access to passwords and account numbers for bank, e-mail and other sensitive online accounts," Warner said.

According to Warner, cyber criminals employing the Russian-language Zeus Bot software are using the fake Internet postcards as the latest mechanism to download the virus software onto unwitting users' computers.

The expert says that the virus, once downloaded on a computer, becomes a part of the Zeus Botnet, and can steal Web site data from victims.

The malware uses a graphical user interface to keep track of infected machines throughout the world, and is equipped with tools that allow the criminals to prioritize the banks and related stolen accounts they want to strike, Warner said.

"These messages are standard in their design and carry a subject line that indicates they come from the Web site 1001 Postcards," Warner said.

"In this case and when it comes to messages that are supposedly from your bank, eBay or any other site, don't click on the links in an e-mail.

"Instead, type the address for the site that the message is coming from into your Web browser and log in as you normally would. If the site has an important message for you, you'll be able to find it," Warner said. (ANI)

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