Dubious Honors: Top 25 Names in Spam Titles, 2009

To snare unsuspecting users, spam senders used a glittering list of celebrities in the message line. Who were the top draws?


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McAfee Labs on Monday unveiled its rankings of the Top 25 men and women listed in the subject lines of spam e-mails in 2009 with President Obama coming in atop the less-than-desirable list.

Spammers and phishers have and always will use celebrities and breaking news events to promulgate their annoying and increasingly destructive malware.

President Obama checked in as the most common spam subject last year, beating out the likes of Michael Jackson (No. 2 among men), former President George W. Bush (No. 3), actor Brad Pitt (No. 4) and musician Eminem (No. 5).

Rounding out McAfee's (NYSE: MFE) Top 10 among men in spam subject lines were Warren Buffett (No. 6), Chuck Norris (No. 7), Don Juan (No. 8), Elton John (No. 9) and Sacha Baron Cohen (No. 10).

Others worth noting were Pope Benedict XVI (No. 11), Elvis Presley (No. 12), Mike Tyson (No. 16) and American Idol judge Simon Cowell barely made the cut at No. 25.

Among women in subject lines, spammers, fishers and would-be hackers thought Internet users would be most likely to click on a link with actress Angelina Jolie's name attached to it. In fact, only President Obama was found in more subject lines than Mrs. Brad Pitt, according to McAfee's January 2010 Spam Report.

"Bottom line, it looks like you have to be President to be a more popular spam target than Angelina," the report's authors said. "Sorry, guys."

Oprah Winfrey checked in at No. 2 followed by Paris Hilton, Britney Spears, and Miley Cyrus.

Read the rest at ServerWatch.

Tags: spam, Spammers

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