Threat Level: green Handler on Duty: Guy Bruneau

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Interesting German pump-and-dump spam

If you have a European e-mail address, you may have received some interesting pump and dump spam over the last few days, related to a stock on the Frankfurt stock Exchange. So far these messages have been mildly succesful: while the stock value hasn't changed dramatically, there has been very high trade volume, indicating potential high profit from even the slightest change. It seems that after a recent SEC operation, foreign stock exchanges are now preferred.

These new pump-and-dump spam messages do not carry random text as content, but consist of copies of complete text found online. So far, content of these messages has been reported in English, German, Dutch and Esperanto. They are parts of newsgroup messages, books that are published online and even software manuals.

The actual message has always been in German and did not only appear at the top of the message, but also at the bottom. In combination with the valid and unique text (appears to be crafted for each mail separately), this makes it quite difficult to detect the messages through spam filtering.

As listed in a previous diary entry, Bafin is the German authority responsible for investigating price manipulation.


158 Posts
May 14th 2007

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