The Nation


Unwanted mails

Spammers intend catering to all this Christmas

Symantec issued a warning: watch out for Christmas spams, as Internet predators are taking advantage of unaware recipients.

With a systematic study of business done during Christmas, spammers have leveraged a plethora of categories since early July, ranging from hospitality-related spam for those who plan early on how to celebrate Christmas later in the year, to last minute shoppers who scramble to buy gifts before rushing home. Now, that is a well-planned spread.

Overall, the spam panorama this Christmas looks pervasive. The aim is to harness curiosity laced with fantastic offers that can exploit unhealthy user practices, unsecured systems and half-baked solutions. The focus of spammers continue to be on how to best understand and exploit human tendencies and then to entice users to either compromise sensitive information or visit a dubious webpage.

Symantec advises users to pay attention to details while judging the genuineness of the mail by considering the following:

• Did you subscribe or unsubscribe to such offers in the past?

• Is it one of those forwarded mails a friend has been ensnared into?

• Is the sender, the context and content of the mail authentic?

We encourages users to be alert during this festive season while dealing with online offers through emails. Symantec has protection in place to stop malware and spam and advise users to regularly update antivirus

signatures to stay protected from latest threats. Protect yourself and limit the amount of your personal information on the public domain.

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