Pfizer PCs hijacked to send Viagra spam

Spammers set a new benchmark for mockery

Spammers have set a new benchmark for mockery, hijacking PCs inside drug giant Pfizer to send out adverts for the company's most famous product, Viagra, it has been claimed.

According to US botnet tracking company Support Intelligence, a total of 138 IP addresses inside the company's various networks have had to be blacklisted after being found to be relaying spam. In an interview with Wired, the company reports that it has kept 600 examples of spam emails said to have come from Pfizer-owned computers in the last six months.

Most incredible of all, however, is the fact that some of these emails appear to have been designed to sell the company's own erectile dysfunction product, Viagra, as well as equivalents from rivals such as Eli Lily.

None of the recipients of these emails would have been aware that Pfizer was being used to send the spam, however, as the spoof return address gives the impression that they are from Google Gmail accounts.

Other leading companies, including Toshiba and Bank of America have also been affected by the botnet/zombie phenomenon. Oddly, Support Intelligence had informed Pfizer of the particular issue on its network, but that hadn't stopped the activity, the company said.

The company appears to take some pleasure in pointing out just how many large organisations are affected by the botnet scourge, even, in some cases, as they report on it. In a June blog, the author taunts the BBC for having problems on its own network, but ends up grudgingly commending the organisation for solving the issue in advance of being notified.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

John E. Dunn

Techworld

Comments

Comments are now closed.

Most Popular Reviews

Follow Us

Best Deals on GoodGearGuide

Shopping.com

Latest News Articles

Resources

GGG Evaluation Team

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Steph Mundell

LIFEBOOK UH574

The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.

Andrew Mitsi

STYLISTIC Q702

The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.

Simon Harriott

STYLISTIC Q702

My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?