According to global security firms, the recent Ashley Madison data breach has brought forth a large spike in email campaigns, all mentioning the famed infidelity website. The firm Symantec reports a surge in phishing attacks, focused on the data leak of Ashley Madison users, with scammers attempting to take advantage of those impacted by the breach.
Scammers are always quick to take advantage of current events, and the size and magnitude of the Ashley Madison breach, paired with the sensitive data stored on its database, provided scammers the perfect opportunity to target those concerned that their partner’s name is included in the information leak.
It is recommended that individuals be cautious of any email relating to the breach.
Symantec’s blog reports the number of spam campaigns blocked on the basis of mentioning Ashley Madison has skyrocketed since August 18th, when information of the stolen database was made public.
This breach, and the subsequent leak of Ashley Madison user data, has created a market opportunity for scammers to try and take advantage of those affected by the breach, and to safeguard against this companies such as Symantec have blocked thousands of spam emails that list domains related to Ashley Madison, including domains such as:
As time passes, more and more spam campaigns are being blocked because of their references to the websites in the subject lines of the emails. including:
Because of the nature of the business, Ashley Madison has always been the subject of a certain amount of malicious activity, however, in recent weeks, the activity has increased. Other firms and industry experts have also noted attempts by scammers to capitalize off of the breach, and there have been reports of blackmail emails directed at those who have had their details exposed in the breach, consisting of things like nondisclosure to their partner, for a price of course.
If an individual finds themselves targeted by spam emails, then they are advised to:
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