Spammers Offering Fake Gifts for Father’s Day

This year, Father’s Day will be celebrated on June 19th. Of course, this is an occasion that is used to express feelings towards dads for all of their love and support, often accompanied by the giving of exclusive gifts. Sadly, spammers don’t forget to send out their fake offers to target this special day. Symantec is observing an increase in spam volume related to this event, which is shown in the graph below.

Father’s Day spam can be categorized into hit-and-run spam promoting fake products, e-cards, dating, and gift card spam. Various product promotions are seen to contain products such as cigars, replica watches, wallets, and computer accessories. Once a user clicks on a fake offer, they are directed to a webpage where they are asked to divulge confidential information such as a credit card number, CVV, email address, etc. Below are some examples of this type of spam email message with fake offers:

Here are some various “Subject” lines used in this latest spam campaign:

Subject: We Have What Dad REALLY Wants for Father's Day
Subject: Save 80% on the Perfect Father's Day Gift!
Subject: Affordable Father's Day gift that Dad will love!
Subject: Premium Cigars - Perfect for Father's Day!
Subject: Personalized Gifts for Father's Day
Subject: Father's day should send what gift? Holawatch bring your love to your father.
Subject: Don't Forget Dad this Fathers day
Subject: Help Dad Protect His Hard-Earned Money!

Spammers will always try to take advantage of unwitting users by providing fake offers for buying products, but only after the user has entered personal information. Users should not click on any suspicious links received in unsolicited email messages and should always determine the legitimacy of the email and offers. When it comes to ordering a product online, users need to be very attentive towards the authenticity of a website. Websites that sell such products and ask for financial or personal information should be protected by SSL certificates and provide visible trust marks for verifying their authenticity. Keep the basics of online transactions in mind when buying the perfect gift for your dad. Happy Father’s Day!

Note: Thanks to Anand Muralidharan and Azam Raza for their contributions to this blog.