Spammers and phishers are taking advantage of the shortage of flu vaccine in the United States to dupe consumers into divulging credit-card numbers or buying bogus doses online, a security firm warned last week. Bogus offers for the flu vaccine are "rampant," according to Vircom, a Montreal E-mail security vendor, and unlicensed vaccines are being sold by unregulated online pharmacies and offshore suppliers. "The vaccine shortage has caused some people to become desperate, creating new opportunities for scammers to defraud E-mail users," said Marc Chouinard, head of Vircom's anti-spam team, in a statement.
The Recording Industry Association of America filed lawsuits last week against 750 computer users, most of them college students, in its attempt to control the illegal distribution of music over the Internet. The universities named in the RIAA lawsuits were Indiana State, Iowa State, Ohio State, and Southern Mississippi. Since September 2003, more than 6,000 people have been charged with violating intellectual-property laws as part of the recording industry's anti-file-sharing campaign.
A nationwide survey concerning spyware conducted by Equation Research for Webroot Software, a Boulder, Colo., security vendor, found that more than 70% of the 275 companies polled see the surreptitious monitoring software as a threat, but fewer than 10% have deployed anti-spyware software to protect their networks. According to Webroot, most companies incorrectly assume they're immune from spyware because of the security software they already have in place.
I always assume I'm being watched anyway--it makes me feel wanted, and it fits my paranoid view of the world. I assume you'll send me an industry tip, to [email protected], or phone 516-562-5326. If you want to talk about buying prescription drugs online, meet me at InformationWeek.com's Listening Post: informationweek.com/forum/johnsoat.