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Barracuda Networks Warns against Spam Email Campaigns Purportedly from the Internal Revenue Service and the Canada Revenue Agency

(EMAILWIRE.COM, February 06, 2009 ) CAMPBELL, CA - Barracuda Networks Inc., the worldwide leader in email and Web security appliances, today warned email users not to open emails or follow links contained in emails purportedly from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) that promise payment if recipients submit a “stimulus payment form.” Barracuda Networks reports that the number of such emails has been steadily on the rise in the past 24 hours following recent news of President Barack Obama’s push to get a new economic stimulus package passed through Congress. Similar campaigns allegedly from the Canada Canada Revenue Agency are also on the rise and promise a “tax refund.”

“These particular spam scams are certainly variations of schemes we have seen in past years during tax season, but what is relatively new this year is how adept the spammers are at chasing the latest news, be it good or bad news, related to the economy,” said Stephen Pao, vice president of product management for Barracuda Networks. “Spammers are very aware that people are in a vulnerable position right now and are looking for ways to cash in on that vulnerability.”

In the latest IRS spam campaign, spammers try to lure recipients to fill out an online form to receive their “Stimulus Payment.” The email often includes an attachment that leads the recipient to a phishing Web site designed to look like the legitimate IRS Web site. Once on the site, recipients are asked for personally identifying information such as social security number, name and address. Other variations of this campaign, including the campaign allegedly from the Canada Revenue Agency, include dollar amounts that are purportedly owed to the recipient as part of the refund.

“So far we have found that most of the phishing sites were quickly detected by the Web Host Providers and have been de-activated,” said Pao. “It is still important to note, however, that these type of campaigns tend to mutate rather quickly using new domains. Further, consumers would also be well served to never provide personal information on a Web site that they link to from an email. It is typically safer to visit the Web site directly, whether it’s a retail site, a financial institution site or even a government Web site such as the IRS.”

Both the IRS (http://www.irs.gov) and Canada Revenue Agency (http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/) have issued warnings on their respective Web sites about fraudulent email communications and how to report them.

About Barracuda Networks Inc.

Barracuda Networks Inc. is the worldwide leader in email and Web security appliances. Barracuda Networks also provides world-class IM protection, application server load balancing, Web application security, message archiving, and backup and disaster recovery solutions. Coca-Cola, FedEx, Harvard University, IBM, L'Oreal, and Europcar, are amongst the 70,000 organizations protecting their networks with Barracuda Networks’ solutions. Barracuda Networks' success is due to its ability to deliver easy to use, comprehensive solutions that solve the most serious issues facing customer networks without unnecessary add-ons, maintenance, lengthy installations or per user license fees. Barracuda Networks is privately held with its headquarters in Campbell, Calif. Barracuda Networks has offices in 10 international locations and distributors in more than 80 countries worldwide. For more information, please visit www.barracudanetworks.com.

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This press release was issued through GroupWeb EmailWire.Com. For more information on unlimited press release distribution for $99/month, go to http://www.emailwire.com.

Barracuda Networks Inc.
Kylie Heintz
408-342-5440
kheintz@barracuda.com

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