Home Malware Fake LinkedIn Invitation Emails Point to Malware

Fake LinkedIn Invitation Emails Point to Malware

by Brett M. Christensen

Outline
Emails purporting to be from social network LinkedIn ask recipients to click a link to view pending invitation messages. 

Brief Analysis
The emails are not from LinkedIn. Links in the bogus emails open websites that contain malware.

Example

Subject: LinkedIn Alert

LinkedIn
REMINDERS
Invitation reminders:
• From [Name Removed] (Friend)

PENDING MESSAGES

• There are a total of 2 messages awaiting your response. Visit your InBox now.

Don’t want to receive email notifications? Adjust your message settings.

LinkedIn Malware Emails

 

Detailed Analysis
Malicious emails purporting to be from popular business orientated online network LinkedIn are currently being distributed. The emails, which look like official LinkedIn messages, claim that pending invitations are awaiting the recipient’s response and advise him or her to visit the LinkedIn email inbox to view the invitations.

However, the messages are not from LinkedIn and links in the messages do not lead to the LinkedIn website. In fact, all links in the bogus messages point to a website that contains malicious software. Clicking the links opens a page that tries to trick the visitor into downloading and installing the malicious software. The version of the message that I examined pointed to a site that contained a rogue anti-virus program. Alternative versions of the scam messages may open sites that contain other types of malware.

The bogus emails have been designed to resemble genuine LinkedIn messages. Links in the messages have been disguised so that they appear to point to the real LinkedIn website. Internet criminals regularly use such ruses to target users of popular social networks such as LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter.

Be cautious of following links in any emails that purport to be official notifications from such networks. Always check that links in such emails are genuine. Ensure that links in such messages only direct you back to pages on the network’s own website.


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