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Still Pumping and Dumping

Posted by on April 25, 2017.

Not long ago I talked about a second wave of ‘pump and dump’ spam apparently spread by Necurs and encouraging victims to buy stock in a small company because it is about to become very valuable. Today I’m seeing claims that a takeover of that company is about to be announced by a very, very big pharmaceutical company on account of its ‘treatment for cancerous tumors’. Though the latest spate of messages has stopped enthusing about the alleged medical benefits and focused on the financial benefits. ‘By tomorrow evening this stock will be twenty times higher.’

The message also says ‘You need to act quickly though because it seems I may not be the only one with this information…’ Well, that’s certainly true, given the undiscriminating dissemination of the spam via a botnet. I have literally dozens of messages in my spamtraps relating to this campaign alone, and many more relating to the earlier campaign supposed to relate to drone technology.

If you get one of these messages, you might wonder how ‘a company that apparently distributes fitness equipment’ has suddenly happened across a miracle cure so dramatic that it’s claimed to have attracted the attention of Pfizer. And why such a ‘secret’ has been broadcast promiscuously and repetitively across the internet. According to MyOnlineSecurity, this may be the 11th iteration of spam relating to QSMG’s ‘cure’.

And the answer is that someone wants as many people as possible to buy the hyped stock, to push its value artificially high, before that same someone sells off their own stock at the inflated price. Once the campaign stops, those who responded to it are likely to find that they’ve sustained a significant loss as the shares drop back to something like their original, unhyped value.

David Harley


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