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Be aware of the IFC Global Development Funding Program email scam

Also Known As: IFC Global Development Funding Program spam
Damage level: Medium

What is "IFC Global Development Funding Program Email Scam"?

This email scam is disguised as a message regarding fund approval, supposedly by "IFC Global Development Funding Program". Scammers behind this email claim that recipients can receive a specific sum of money by sending various personal details.

We strongly advise against replying to this email or providing any information to scammers - they are likely to misuse the details to generate revenue, which would lead to a number of problems. Ignore this and other, similar emails and do not believe the statements.

IFC Global Development Funding Program Email Scam spam campaign

Scammers have disguised this email as a message from the chairman of the International Finance Corporation. It states that the recipient's email address has been selected to receive $1,500,000 within the IFC Global Development Funding Program.

To get more information, the recipient is encouraged to send details such as name, telephone number, age, gender, address and the provided reference number (in this case, IFC-060290_EC) to unccclaims.onariduke@gmail.com. It is very likely that scammers will demand other details (e.g., credit card details), which could be misused to generate revenue.

In any case, we strongly recommend against sending any details via the email address provided or replying to this email, since this could lead to problems such as financial loss, identity theft, privacy breaches, and other serious issues. The best option in such cases is to simply ignore emails of this type.

Threat Summary:
Name IFC Global Development Funding Program Email Scam.
Threat Type Phishing, Scam, Social Engineering, Fraud.
Fake Claim Scammers claim that recipients have been selected to receive $1,500,000.
Cyber Criminal Contact unccclaims.onariduke@gmail.com
Disguise This email is disguised as a message from International Finance Corporation.
Symptoms Unauthorized online purchases, changed online account passwords, identity theft, illegal access of the computer.
Distribution methods Deceptive emails, rogue online pop-up ads, search engine poisoning techniques, misspelled domains.
Damage Loss of sensitive private information, monetary loss, identity theft.
Malware Removal (Windows)

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More examples of other, similar email scams include "TOYOTA LOTTERY ORGANIZATION", "Google Winner", and "Google Ads - Your Account Is Suspended". Typically, scammers send these emails to obtain personal details or even money from unsuspecting recipients.

In most cases, they disguise their emails as official, important, and so on. They commonly use names of legitimate companies, which have nothing to do with these scams. Emails via spam campaigns can also be used to trick people into installing malware such as LokiBot, TrickBot, Emotet, AZORult, Adwind (and other malicious software).

In such cases, they send messages that contain malicious attachments and/or website links that are designed to download malicious files and attempt to deceive recipients into opening them.

How do spam campaigns infect computers?

Typically, computers become infected through emails only when recipients open files downloaded through a website link included in the message, or when they open the attached file. Cyber criminals attach files such as Microsoft Office, PDF documents, archive files such as ZIP, RAR, JavaScript and executable files (.exe).

For example, if the attached file is a malicious MS Office document, it will demand permission to enable editing (macros commands) when opened.

By enabling macros, recipients inadvertently allow documents to install malicious software. This applies only to documents that are opened with MS Office 2010 or earlier - these older versions do not include Protected View mode and infect systems without asking permission.

How to avoid installation of malware

Attachments or website links that are included in irrelevant emails should not be opened, especially if the messages are received from unknown, suspicious addresses. Files and programs should be downloaded from official websites only.

Avoid third party downloaders, Peer-to-Peer networks such as torrent clients, eMule, and so on. Installed software must be updated and activated (if necessary) only through implemented functions or tools that are provided by official developers. It is illegal to use third party activators ('cracking' tools).

Regularly scan the operating system for threats using a reputable antivirus or anti-spyware suite. If you have already opened malicious attachments, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows to automatically eliminate infiltrated malware.

Text presented in the "IFC Global Development Funding Program Email Scam" email message:

Subject: IFC Fund Approved (IFC-060290_EC)


Congratulations!

We are pleased to announce that your EMAIL ADDRESS has been selected to receive $ 1,500,000 under the IFC Global Development Funding Program. It was agreed and signed by the management team of the International Finance Corporation (IFC) and the Board of Directors of the World Bank Group and UBA Group. The reference number of your file is (IFC-060290_EC).

All beneficiaries were selected through the IFC Global Random Integrated System, which has received more than 27 million e-mail addresses on the Internet. The lucky beneficiaries do not need to buy a ticket to participate in this IFC Global Development Funding program. Include your full details, such as your name and phone number: Age: Gender: Address and your file reference for processing and disbursing your IFC Global Development Fund. You are to receive your fundings through a certified VISA ATM Card. With this VISA Card you can withdraw money from any part of the World without being disturbed or delay. Contact Mrs. Onari Duke with your code: IFC-060290_EC for more information.  

Card Issuing Bank: UBA Group
Contact Name: Mrs. Onari Duke
Email: unccclaims.onariduke@gmail.com

We hope to hear from you as soon as you receive payment for the IFC Global Development Fund. Further information on the IFC Global Development Funding Program can be found on our website: www.ifc.org

Greetings,
Mr. Philippe Le Hou¨¦rou (Chairman of IFC)

*****************
NOTE: If you have received this message in your SPAM / BULK folder because your ISP has introduced restrictions, we (IFC Team) kindly ask you to handle it.
*****************

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Types of malicious emails:

Phishing email icon Phishing Emails

Most commonly, cybercriminals use deceptive emails to trick Internet users into giving away their sensitive private information, for example, login information for various online services, email accounts, or online banking information.

Such attacks are called phishing. In a phishing attack, cybercriminals usually send an email message with some popular service logo (for example, Microsoft, DHL, Amazon, Netflix), create urgency (wrong shipping address, expired password, etc.), and place a link which they hope their potential victims will click on.

After clicking the link presented in such email message, victims are redirected to a fake website that looks identical or extremely similar to the original one. Victims are then asked to enter their password, credit card details, or some other information that gets stolen by cybercriminals.

Email-virus icon Emails with Malicious Attachments

Another popular attack vector is email spam with malicious attachments that infect users' computers with malware. Malicious attachments usually carry trojans that are capable of stealing passwords, banking information, and other sensitive information.

In such attacks, cybercriminals' main goal is to trick their potential victims into opening an infected email attachment. To achieve this goal, email messages usually talk about recently received invoices, faxes, or voice messages.

If a potential victim falls for the lure and opens the attachment, their computers get infected, and cybercriminals can collect a lot of sensitive information.

While it's a more complicated method to steal personal information (spam filters and antivirus programs usually detect such attempts), if successful, cybercriminals can get a much wider array of data and can collect information for a long period of time.

Sextortion email icon Sextortion Emails

This is a type of phishing. In this case, users receive an email claiming that a cybercriminal could access the webcam of the potential victim and has a video recording of one's masturbation.

To get rid of the video, victims are asked to pay a ransom (usually using Bitcoin or another cryptocurrency). Nevertheless, all of these claims are false - users who receive such emails should ignore and delete them.

How to spot a malicious email?

While cyber criminals try to make their lure emails look trustworthy, here are some things that you should look for when trying to spot a phishing email:

  • Check the sender's ("from") email address: Hover your mouse over the "from" address and check if it's legitimate. For example, if you received an email from Microsoft, be sure to check if the email address is @microsoft.com and not something suspicious like @m1crosoft.com, @microsfot.com, @account-security-noreply.com, etc.
  • Check for generic greetings: If the greeting in the email is "Dear user", "Dear @youremail.com", "Dear valued customer", this should raise suspiciousness. Most commonly, companies call you by your name. Lack of this information could signal a phishing attempt.
  • Check the links in the email: Hover your mouse over the link presented in the email, if the link that appears seems suspicious, don't click it. For example, if you received an email from Microsoft and the link in the email shows that it will go to firebasestorage.googleapis.com/v0... you shouldn't trust it. It's best not to click any links in the emails but to visit the company website that sent you the email in the first place.
  • Don't blindly trust email attachments: Most commonly, legitimate companies will ask you to log in to their website and to view any documents there; if you received an email with an attachment, it's a good idea to scan it with an antivirus application. Infected email attachments are a common attack vector used by cybercriminals.

To minimise the risk of opening phishing and malicious emails we recommend using Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows

Example of a spam email:

Example of an email spam

What to do if you fell for an email scam?

  • If you clicked on a link in a phishing email and entered your password - be sure to change your password as soon as possible. Usually, cybercriminals collect stolen credentials and then sell them to other groups that use them for malicious purposes. If you change your password in a timely manner, there's a chance that criminals won't have enough time to do any damage.
  • If you entered your credit card information - contact your bank as soon as possible and explain the situation. There's a good chance that you will need to cancel your compromised credit card and get a new one.
  • If you see any signs of identity theft - you should immediately contact the Federal Trade Commission. This institution will collect information about your situation and create a personal recovery plan.
  • If you opened a malicious attachment - your computer is probably infected, you should scan it with a reputable antivirus application. For this purpose, we recommend using Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows.
  • Help other Internet users - report phishing emails to Anti-Phishing Working Group, FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center, National Fraud Information Center and U.S. Department of Justice.

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About the author:

Tomas Meskauskas

Tomas Meskauskas - expert security researcher, professional malware analyst.

I am passionate about computer security and technology. I have an experience of over 10 years working in various companies related to computer technical issue solving and Internet security. I have been working as an author and editor for pcrisk.com since 2010. Follow me on Twitter and LinkedIn to stay informed about the latest online security threats. Contact Tomas Meskauskas.

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Malware activity

Global malware activity level today:

Medium threat activity

Increased attack rate of infections detected within the last 24 hours.

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