Monday, January 20, 2014

Breaking News! Funeral service and memorial e-notices contain malware which infects your computer.

Hackers are preying on the sympathies of bereaved families and friends. If the deceased is not mentioned in the email, do not click on the link. 

Funeral homes and those they serve should be on alert for a nasty new email scam.

As if grieving families don't have enough to deal with at the time of a death, now they have to deal with a new email scam, trying to steal their information and harm their computers. This new scam swipes the names and logos of funeral homes in hopes of getting recipients to click on a malware-infected link, which will infect their computer. The emails were not sent by the funeral homes that they name. Instead, they are part of a criminal campaign designed to trick recipients into downloading and installing malware.

The infected email purports to be an e-invite to a funeral or remembrance service for an unnamed friend or acquaintance. That should be your first clue. No one is mentioned.

The email may have the subject line “funeral notification” or “passing of your friend.”

Several versions are circulating. Here's one version:

“You are cordially invited to express your sympathy in memory of your friend at a celebration of life service….”

There’s a link to get more info about the deceased and the service. That link apparently is infected with malware. Do not click it. Resist the urge!

The emails include an upcoming date for the funeral service, so recipients may feel they have little time to get the information they need.The hackers create a sense of urgency so most people will click first and question later. Later will be too late -for your PC that is.

At least two funeral homes – one in Texas, one in Arkansas – have issued warnings that their names are being used on the fraudulent emails. These types of e-scams morph fast, so I would expect more versions using other funeral home names to pop up.

What you need to look for.

If you get an e-invite to a funeral or memorial service, ignore it if it doesn’t include the name of the deceased.

If you get one and you are concerned that you might miss a real memorial or funeral service, you can put your mind at rest by googling the funeral home name and checking the funeral home’s website. This is very important, do not use the links on the email! You can also scan the local death notices in your newspaper.

If you fall prey to these hackers,the only death that you'll notice is your computer's demise.

Nancy Burban 2014

Funeral fund


  1. Thanks for the "heads up", Nancy. I never would have known about this - and, once again, you keep us up-to-date with the important things. I will be sure to "share" and spread the word. Great job, friend; great job. :)


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