McCain Dies from Heart Attack, Spammers Inform
Article by George Norman
On 07 Nov 2008
Obama may have won the elections, and the malware infesting spam war, but at least John McCain is the king of Viagra spam, and now he is dead – or at least that is what the spammers would have you think. Sophos, company that specializes in providing antispam and antivirus software solutions, has reported that the McCain related spam messages it has recently detected inform us that the presidential candidate has suffered a heart attack which lead to his demise.

There are several subject lines that the spammers use, the most audacious of them being “McCain died of heart stroke”. Other subject lines include the following: “McCane’s wife private video”, “McCane caught nude in public”, and “McCane private secret”. There are several things that give the message away for what it really is (spam). The first is that the mail is unsolicited; the second is that the title is a sensationalistic one, and the third is that they misspelled John McCain’s name. What respectable news broadcasting company would ever do that?


The spam messages, grim subject lines and all, attempt to sell the same pharmaceutical products as before – Viagra and other male enhancement medicine. It seems that spammers have really taken to McCain in this regard.

According to Sophos’ Graham Cluley, there is nothing new in the way these spammers act. A spam message is efficient only if it gets the receiver to open and read it; this goal is attained by using flamboyant subject lines that will raise the receiver’s interest. A commonplace subject line will go unnoticed, and what good will that do the spammer? What is new is the fact that these spammers have stooped so low as to announce someone’s death. Even if you are trying to promote a product by means of spam, it takes “a truly sick mind” to think of such a subject line.

Tags: Sophos
About the author: George Norman
George is a news editor.
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