“$1000 Gift Card email”. Why do I receive these emails?

The $1000 Gift Card email virus is a common callsign for the unwanted email spam you can spectate in your mailbox. These messages contain pseudo-official notifications that you can get a $1000 gift card. As the letter states, you will see all further steps on by the link attached to this email. This link will lead you to different websites, which may contain phishing forms or malicious links. You will read the complete description of this scam, as well as the risks associated with it in this short article.

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What is the $1000 Gift Card email virus?

The heading of the message exactly repeats its sense, that’s why users gave this spam such a name. The fraudsters who try to bait the user to visit a certain website in such a way just took this name to lull the vigilance. Everyone likes giveaways, so the possibility that users will check the link just because of the interest is quite big. And when the victim receives this email, he/she will not even think that this is a phishing1. The chance that a person will click the link or launch the file attached to this email message is very high.

$1000 Gift Card scam message

The hysteria is increased by the contents of the $1000 Gift Card email virus message: it says that the amount of winners is limited. The less time is passed after receiving this email, the bigger the chances to get your $1000 gift card. The text and terms may vary depending on the humor of fraudsters. This message looks quite strange, because fraudsters do not even take the disguise of some famous company, as they used to do. Hence, it is quite easy to suppose that only children or greedy people will bait on such a stupid lure.

***THESE ARE THE RULES***

1. Claim your prize by pressing the link below!

https:cdnflair[.]com/srv[.]html?id=5501622&pub=1495919

2. You will be taken to the website of one of our approved distributors.

3. Complete a small survey to claim your $1000 Gift Card.

How dangerous the $1000 Gift Card email virus is?

Regardless of the reason the user opened the link/file, he will likely get different viruses on his computer. The exact class of the malicious program is not related to the contents of the spam email, since all malware are spread by the same cybercriminals. These viruses are just injected to your personal computer as a part of Microsoft Word document, directly from the mailing application or from the hyperlink attached to the $1000 Gift Card email virus letter. No difficult methods, like exploit kit usage – victims will do everything themselves.

The attached link does not lead you to malware downloading. Instead, it shows you the rogue website, full of advertisements and other dubious links. Sometimes, you can see another notification saying that you won a prize, or can get an Amazon free gift card. That specific element makes this spamming campaign different to others, such as “FedEx Express” spam or “Employee retention credit” messages.

Here is a short description of $1000 Gift Card email virus:
Name $1000 Gift Card email virus
Type Email spam
Hazard type Various viruses from rogue sites
Malware source Malicious link attached to the email
Disguise Notifications stating that you won a $1000 gift card
Protection methods
To remove possible virus infections, try to scan your PC

This malware spreading scheme is used to distribute spyware, banking trojans and keyloggers. All of them are aimed on your sensitive information, primarily – on the important logging keys. The second type may be the most harmful one if you make use of online banking. It is aimed on collecting the logging keys on the websites of the banks, so it can easily thief your login/password. So, the cybercriminals will be able to do whatever they intend with your equity2. At the same time, spyware can ignore your banking logins and passwords, but will definitely dig out all possible info about you and your computer. List of the installed apps, often-used programs, anti-malware software onboard, credentials for the social networks – this and a lot of other data will be theft and sent to the control server.

Can I avoid this scam?

The things are not so despairing for the $1000 Gift Card email virus. It is possible to distinguish the counterfeited email. First, you need to remember if you have a $1000 Gift Card email account. It can be very funny to spectate this sort of spam in case when you don’t have one. However, some users may click the added file/link just because of the simple interest. People can do spontaneous acts, and this is just such a case. Another thing that can help you to see that somebody attempts to scam you is the sender’s email address. Official [DISGUISE] email has a special domain name, and the crooks will definitely not be able to get an email address in this domain. Instead, fraudsters will likely create an email address like “noreply-support12961@gmail.com” or even “uasfbp02309@aol.com”. It is very easy to find the difference between the first one from the second and third, isn’t it?

 $1000 Gift Card email email scam

The example of dubious email address on another online spamming campaign

The final defence layer is an security tool. A lot of users have their email conversations in the separated program, called mail client. Some of that clients download the document at the moment when you check the email. In this case, you need to have an security tool which has a function of on-run protection. Last function makes it possible to block the virus starting when the situation is just like I have described in this paragraph. Same thing is with attached links: to understand that these links are malevolent, the anti-malware software must have an internet protection ability. All of these functions are available in GridinSoft Anti-Malware, and I will recommend you to use it to protect your computer from $1000 Gift Card email virus and similar hazards.

What can I do if I have clicked on the link/file in the spam message?

Don’t panic. The spyware activity is not a doom. Of course, the important information you have on your PC is definitely in danger, but the credentials can easily be changed. First of all, you need to get rid of the viruses you have got because of the $1000 Gift Card email virus. I can offer you to make use of GridinSoft Anti-Malware to perform this step.

Removing the viruses with GridinSoft Anti-Malware

  • Download and install GridinSoft Anti-Malware. After the installation, you will be offered to perform the Standard Scan. Approve this action.
  • Gridinsoft Anti-Malware during the scan process

  • Standard scan checks the logical disk where the system files are stored, together with the files of programs you have already installed. The scan lasts up to 6 minutes.
  • GridinSoft Anti-Malware scan results

  • When the scan is over, you may choose the action for each detected virus. For all files of the viruses distributed through the described phishing the default option is “Delete”. Press “Apply” to finish the malware removal.
  • GridinSoft Anti-Malware - After Cleaning

Now, when the virus is removed, you need to remember which logging keys you inputted after clicking the spam message. Malware is not omnipotent, and is not able to steal the logins and passwords which were not in use. So, keep calm and change the login details that are about to be compromised.

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References

  1. About phishing methods and ways of counteraction.
  2. Detailed description of the banking trojans on Investopedia

About the author

Robert Bailey

Security Engineer. Interested in malware, reverse engineering, white ethical hacking. I like coding, travelling and bikes.

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