Home Malware Bogus Department of Education and Training ‘Form Receipt’ Email Contains Malware

Bogus Department of Education and Training ‘Form Receipt’ Email Contains Malware

by Brett M. Christensen

An email claiming to be a form receipt from the Department of Education and Training is currently being distributed. The email claims that you recently submitted an application form at Business.gov.au and includes a reference number. The message advises you to open an attached PDF to review a copy of your form submission.

However, the email is not from the Department of Education and Training and the attachment does not contain a copy of a form submission. Instead, the attached .zip file contains malware. 
Opening the attached file, which has the same name as the ‘reference number’ in the body of the email, reveals an executable file that can install malware on Microsoft Windows based computers. The exact purpose of this malware may vary. Typically, however, it can download and install other malware components, steal sensitive information such as passwords from the infected computer, and allow criminals to access and control the computer from afar.

If you receive this email, do not open any attachments or click any links that it contains.

Example

Subject: Form Receipt – (Automated Notification) – Department of Education and Training

Form Submitted

You recently submitted an Industry McCormick & Company Incorporated Application Form at Business.gov.au.

Your submission reference number is: PJQGE-441

Please see the attached PDF for a copy of your form submission.

Department education malware email


Importance Notice

After considerable thought and with an ache in my heart, I have decided that the time has come to close down the Hoax-Slayer website.

These days, the site does not generate enough revenue to cover expenses, and I do not have the financial resources to sustain it going forward.

Moreover, I now work long hours in a full-time and physically taxing job, so maintaining and managing the website and publishing new material has become difficult for me.

And finally, after 18 years of writing about scams and hoaxes, I feel that it is time for me to take my fingers off the keyboard and focus on other projects and pastimes.

When I first started Hoax-Slayer, I never dreamed that I would still be working on the project all these years later or that it would become such an important part of my life. It's been a fantastic and engaging experience and one that I will always treasure.

I hope that my work over the years has helped to make the Internet a little safer and thwarted the activities of at least a few scammers and malicious pranksters.

A Big Thank You

I would also like to thank all of those wonderful people who have supported the project by sharing information from the site, contributing examples of scams and hoaxes, offering suggestions, donating funds, or helping behind the scenes.

I would especially like to thank David White for his tireless contribution to the Hoax-Slayer Facebook Page over many years. David's support has been invaluable, and I can not thank him enough.

Closing Date

Hoax-Slayer will still be around for a few weeks while I wind things down. The site will go offline on May 31, 2021. While I will not be publishing any new posts, you can still access existing material on the site until the date of closure.

Thank you, one and all!

Brett Christensen,
Hoax-Slayer