After news broke that Pope Benedict XVI would step down as head of the Catholic Church, fraudsters took to Twitter to take advantage of the developing story. Messages containing the hashtag “pope,” flooded the popular social network, but many had no connection with the actual news coming out of the Vatican, according to a blog post by Graham Cluley, senior technology consultant at SophosLabs. The tweets were posted from accounts which pictured scantily clad women in profile pictures and included links that most likely did not lead to legitimate websites. Spammers are known to utilize the most popular trending topics on Twitter to lure social media users in the hopes of monetizing their tactics through third-party advertising links. However, the links could easily lead to malicious web pages hosting malware.
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