What is kind of email is "Coca Cola Lottery"?
The "Coca Cola Lottery" email is spam. Our inspection revealed that this letter operates as a phishing scam. It attempts to trick recipients into disclosing private information by claiming that they have won a large sum of money - hence, providing personal details is necessary to claim the prize.
It must be emphasized that these scam emails are in no way associated with The Coca-Cola Company.
"Coca Cola Lottery" email scam overview
The spam email with the subject "CONGRATULATIONS!!!" (may vary) claims that the recipient has been selected as a winner through a "random electronic ballot system". Supposedly, they have won the 750,000.00 USD prize from the "Coca-Cola Lottery". To receive their winnings, the recipient is requested to provide the listed information, include their secret code, and send it to their claims agent.
As mentioned in the introduction, the "Coca Cola Lottery" emails are fake; therefore, recipients will not get any prizes and can experience serious issues instead.
These letters target the following user information: name, sex, age, occupation, nationality, address, and (mobile) phone number. Scammers behind this spam mail can abuse this data and/or sell it to third-parties.
To summarize, by trusting the "Coca-Cola Lottery" emails - users can experience severe privacy issues, financial losses, and even identity theft.
|Name||Coca Cola Lottery phishing email|
|Threat Type||Phishing, Scam, Social Engineering, Fraud|
|Fake Claim||Recipient has won a lottery.|
|Disguise||A lottery held by the Coca-Cola company.|
|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)||
To eliminate possible malware infections, scan your computer with legitimate antivirus software. Our security researchers recommend using Combo Cleaner.
Similar spam campaign examples
Spam mail is typically presented as "urgent", "important", "priority", and similar; it may also be disguised as notifications/messages from various companies, service providers, organizations, authorities, and other legitimate entities. Aside from phishing and other scams, these emails are used to distribute malware (e.g., trojans, ransomware, etc.) as well.
Due to how widespread this mail is, we strongly recommend exercising caution with incoming emails and messages.
How do spam campaigns infect computers?
How to avoid installation of malware?
We strongly advise against opening the attachments and links found in suspicious/irrelevant emails and messages - since they can cause system infections. It is just as important to use Microsoft Office versions released after 2010, as they have the "Protected View" mode that prevents automatic execution of macros.
Malware is not proliferated exclusively through spam mail. Therefore, we recommend downloading only from official/verified channels and activating/updating software with tools provided by genuine developers (as illegal activation "cracking" tools and fake updates may contain malware).
It is crucial to have a reputable anti-virus installed and updated. Security programs must be used to run regular system scans and to remove detected threats and issues. If you've already opened malicious attachments, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows to automatically eliminate infiltrated malware.
Text presented in the "Coca Cola Lottery" scam email letter:
Your Email Address won the sum of US$750,000.00 in the Coca-Cola Lottery conducted through a random electronic ballot system, drawn from email addresses from different companies in the world.
Complete the details and attach your secret code "344521" below.
Send immediately to your appointed Claims Awgent, Dr. Mathew Jones at [email@example.com ] for claims and payment now!
Coca-Cola Lottery Inc. 5/19/2022 11:25:59 a.m.
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- What is Coca Cola Lottery phishing email?
- Types of malicious emails.
- How to spot a malicious email?
- What to do if you fell for an email scam?
Types of malicious 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.
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.
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:
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.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Why did I receive this email?
Spam emails are not personal. Cyber criminals distribute these letters by the thousand, hoping that at least some of the recipients will fall for their scams.
I have provided my personal information when tricked by this spam email, what should I do?
If you have disclosed personal information like ID card details, credit card numbers, or similar - immediately contact the corresponding authorities. And if you provided the scammers with account log-in credentials - change the passwords of all potentially exposed accounts and inform their official support without delay.
I have read a spam email but didn't open the attachment, is my computer infected?
No, merely opening a spam email will not initiate any system infection processes. Malware download/installation is only jumpstarted after the attachments or links present in these letters are opened/clicked.
I have downloaded and opened a file attached to a spam email, is my computer infected?
Whether an infection process was triggered might depend on the opened file's format. If it was an executable - most likely, yes - your system was infected. However, documents (.pdf, .doc, .xls, etc.) may require extra interactions (e.g., enabling macro commands) to start downloading/installing malware.
Will Combo Cleaner remove malware infections present in email attachments?
Yes, Combo Cleaner can detect and eliminate nearly all known malware infections. It is pertinent to mention that sophisticated malicious programs tend to hide deep within systems - therefore, running a full system scan is paramount.