A virus appearing as an online postcard has been identified by web users.
A warning email is passed around internet users, instructing recipients not to open a message that has an attachment named ‘Postcard from Hallmark'.
The email reports that the attachment is “a virus opens a postcard image, which ‘burns' the whole hard disc C of your computer. This virus will be received from someone who has your email address in his/her contact list.”
The email further claims that the virus contained in the attachment is “the worst virus announced by CNN. It has been classified by Microsoft as the most destructive virus ever. This virus was discovered by McAfee yesterday, and there is no repair yet for this kind of virus.”
Speaking to SC, Carl Leonard, threat research manager at Websense, claimed that the threat is genuine but was not a new phenomena.
Leonard said: “The virus and email that has been uncovered has the characteristics of a hoax email that has been spammed out for many years. We do however still see malicious links to fake greetings cards doing the rounds pointing to files such as ecard.exe, e-card.exe and postcard.exe and with email Subjects such as ‘Friend sent you a postcard from Hallmark.Com'.
“A few weeks ago we saw spam being distributed with invites from Facebook. This same spam campaign also used Hallmark greeting cards as a lure, the mal application introduced users into a spam bot.
“With greetings cards being so popular among web users, and the fact that users often lower their guard when they see greeting cards sent from a ‘friend', the social engineering aspect of these legitmate threats is very real. This a trend we are continually tracking and protecting against.”