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24 Nov 2006

New Trojan tricks users with offer of free pornography, warns Sophos

The spam email claims to offer free explicit images and videos
The spam email claims to offer free explicit images and videos.

Experts at SophosLabs™ have warned of a new spam campaign that claims to offer free explicit images and videos, in an attempt to trick users into downloading a malicious Trojan horse. According to Sophos, a weblink to the Psyme-DL Trojan is being widely circulated within emails using a variety of subject lines, invariably containing the words 'free' and 'porn'.

The emails each contain a single sentence and a link to the malicious file. When clicked on, users are given a list of free content to choose from, while the Trojan attempts to download itself onto their machines. Sophos experts note that Psyme-DL exploits a Microsoft Internet Explorer vulnerability, MS06-014, and when the weblink is accessed using Firefox, a message is displayed requesting the user to change browser.

"Despite the numerous warnings users have probably heard about safe computing and appropriate online behaviour, emails with racy subject lines still seem hard to resist for some users," said Carole Theriault, senior security consultant for Sophos. "By infecting machines belonging to users who thought they might steal a peak at some free porn, this malware campaign leads victims down a rathole they might feel embarrassed to be found in. The author of Psyme-DL is not just looking to humiliate but is also attempting to take control of the machines in order to spy, steal or cause havoc on PCs."

Sophos recommends that companies protect their email gateways with a consolidated solution to defend against viruses, spyware and spam, as well as secure their desktop and servers with automatically updated protection.

About Sophos

More than 100 million users in 150 countries rely on Sophos as the best protection against complex threats and data loss. Sophos is committed to providing complete security solutions that are simple to deploy, manage, and use and that deliver the industry's lowest total cost of ownership. Sophos offers award-winning encryption, endpoint security, web, email, mobile and network security solutions backed by SophosLabs - a global network of threat intelligence centers.

Sophos is headquartered in Boston, US and Oxford, UK. More information is available at