BBC Spam Emails

Posted on August 14, 2008. Filed under: Service Alert, Trends | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , |

According to Websense over 5 million spoof emails about the Olympics are being generated per hour. Add to that the fact that now spam emails with the BBC moniker attached to them are now being generated.

This is what the BBC email looks like.

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CNN/MSNBC Email Spam Service Alert

Posted on August 13, 2008. Filed under: Service Alert | Tags: , , , , , , , , , |

Reliant PC Consulting Service Alert


Date: August 13, 2008


Subject: EMAIL SPAM from CNN and MSNBC




This alert has been generated due to an issue that affects my clients’ computer security. A new email spam purportedly coming from CNN and MSNBC is spam and should not be opened.


  1. The email looks legitimate. It contains the CNN or MSNBC logo.
  2. The email contains links that direct the user to a malware hosting site.
  3. The MSNBC spam is not being reported on but I have evidenced this spam email myself.




During a service call to a client they made me aware of this spam email. Research indicated that this email was spam and in this case is particularly pernicious as it appears to come from a legitimate company. Upon opening the email the user will see a professional looking email with the CNN company logo.


Clicking on the “Full Story” link will direct them to a fake CNN site and be directed to download a Flash applet. This Flash applet will generate an endless loop of computer activity. Several pop ups will be generated. If they click cancel the loop will continue.


Clicking on any other links may take you to legitimate sites whose security has been compromised.


What the CNN Email Looks Like


The email is an html email and looks like this:



The spam has also morphed into this:







  1. Keep your operating system, web browser and anti virus software up to date.
  2. Be aware of this email in general. Clients may get several “CNN” emails and the spam emails seem to be generated in response to the increased public awareness of the Olympics in the news.
  3. Delete the email immediately.
  4. If you use a spam filter program be sure it is up-to-date.
  5. If you are infected contact me ASAP and I will assist you on the removal of this software.






This Service Alert addresses a new and emerging threat. There is a good chance you may not be affected by this particular threat but an awareness of it existence will make it less likely to affect you.


If you have any questions or concerns please contact me.

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CNN Bogus Email Alerts

Posted on August 8, 2008. Filed under: Service Alert | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Note:  This issue is now a Service Alert

 Reference this link for more information.

Outlook 2007 does not identify this as spam even after adding it to the spam folder and blocking the address. Upon further research a suggestion of creating an email rule as a work around seemed like a good idea. Used CrossLoop to create the email rule.

Time for problem resolution:  5 minutes.

Saved gas and time as it would have taken me 5 minutes to get there.

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81.5% of emails sent in June were Spam

Posted on July 25, 2008. Filed under: Trends | Tags: , , , |


With that high a percentage of internet email traffic being malicious and of no value you would think the major Canadian ISPs would do something about it.

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Traffic Shaping and How it May Affect You

Posted on April 2, 2008. Filed under: Trends | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |

I have long been a fan of a company called Sandvine located in Waterloo, Ontario. Take a moment to read Sandvine MSO Case Study which overviews the impact of peer-to-peer traffic on a typical Multiple System Operatornetwork. It has a suite of hardware and software tools that “help” ISPs define what type of Internet traffic is going over their Internet infrastructure. These tools, at first glance, appear to be of value not only to the Internet service providers as they can determine how their subscribers are using their services but an interesting, and I believe, disturbing trend is emerging.

ISPs can now “traffic shape“. They, not you, can determine the quality of Internet service you receive and they can do this arbitrarily and legally.

Recent developments, that are now coming to light in the mainstream press, with Bell’s Sympatico Internet service are a prelude to a trend that may, in the end, restrict competition and fair and open access to the Internet for the average home user.

In summary, the concern is that Bell, or any other ISP for that matter, can “bundle” their services so that Internet access and download performance is optimized for their services and partners. Say, for example, you want to see a video at a site not affiliated with Bell and you are a Bell Sympatico subscriber. Practically the video you watch on a Rogers/Yahoo site will be identified as such, and since they are a competitor the download speed may be restricted. If you serve the same content from a Sympatico/MSN site you will get faster download performance.

With the convergence of audio-visual entertainment and news in video format moving to the computer, which every day is becoming an appliance like the television, users will notice content degradation if they visit sites Bell deems as competitive to the slew of partnerships it has established.

I am not saying that Bell is the only one, Comcast in the States is currently having it out with its subscriber base over the very same issue.

It should be noted that peer-to-peer traffic is a major traffic type on the Internet. All the same, does Bell or Rogers restrict and analyze the content you create over the phone, be it land-line or cellular? No. Because, by law that is an issue of privacy and they are restricted from doing so. I would think that the same standards apply for the Internet.

Another impact is that soon, if not now, end-users (i.e. consumers = you) will be getting or will get notices soon telling you that your subscription model has changed. Each person has to assess the amount of web traffic they generate and buy a “package” of so many gigabytes per month. Sounds good right? Well guess what the charges are for going over?

Frankly I would rather they deal with email spam as, not only is it a major irritant, but it eats up bandwidth too. Any many of it is simply illegal.

So, take a look at your ISP bills when they come in. If you have people using BitTorrent, LimeWire and do heavy gaming you might be in for a surprise.

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