It was inevitable: Malware-infested PowerPoint exploits Mayan Doomsday fears

Researchers at Sophos say a booby-trapped PowerPoint presentation titled "Will the world end in 2012?" is circulating.

It was bound to happen. I'm just surprised we haven't seen more of it up to this point.

With the predicted end-of-Mayan-calendar-doomsday scheduled for tomorrow, Dec. 21, someone has decided to send out malware-infested PowerPoint presentations asking if the world will end in 2012.

From Sophos' Naked Security blog:

Like the Excel spreadsheet, this file contained Visual Basic macro code that drops an executable file called VBA[X].exe, where [X] is a random capital letter. In fact, the macro was functionally identical to that found in the Sudoku puzzle.

Also like the Sudoku generator, this sample required the user to enable macros, but didn't include the helpful tip on how to do it or really any good reason you might need a macro to learn about the end times. What are these macros up to? They are designed to construct a valid Windows PE file (Portable Executable) from arrays of single bytes.

While this isn't particularly new, it would throw off the average user from understanding what these macros are designed to do even if they bothered to take a look.

The presentation about the world ending was created by a preacher in the United States who appears to have nothing to do with this booby-trapped version. Don't go looking for this presentation though!

His legitimate WordPress blog has been compromised and is currently performing search engine manipulation duties for Viagra pushers, "off-shore" casinos, forex fraud and payday loans.

My tongue-in-cheeck reaction:

If the world is really going to end tomorrow, and I doubt it will, we're all better off doing other things than looking for PowerPoint presos on Doomsday. Go see a movie, go to confession or start your Christmas drinking early.

New! Download the State of Cybercrime 2017 report