Spam from the Government Secure Internet

Well that’s what it looks like. Criminals apparently from Bangalore┬áhave been distributing loads of malware spams from addresses like┬áNich***.Davi**, and they’re getting through spam filters.

The messages continue:



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Good afternoon

Please find attached your receipt, sent as requested.

Kind regards

(See attached file)

Fixed Penalty Office
Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency | The Ellipse, Padley Road, Swansea,
Phone: 0300 123 9000

Find out more about government services at

This email and any files transmitted with it are confidential and
intended solely for the use of the individual or entity to whom they are
addressed.  Any views or opinions presented may be those of the
originator and do not necessarily represent those of DVSA.

If you were not the intended recipient, you have received this email and
any attached files in error; in which case any storage, use,
dissemination, forwarding, printing, or copying of this email or its
attachments is strictly prohibited.  If you have received this
communication in error please destroy all copies and notify the sender
[and ] by return email.

DVSA's computer systems may be monitored and communications carried on
them recorded, to secure the effective operation of the system and for
other lawful purposes.

Nothing in this email amounts to a contractual or other legal commitment
on the part of DVSA unless confirmed by a communication signed on behalf
of the Secretary of State.

It should be noted that although DVSA makes every effort to ensure that
all emails and attachments sent by it are checked for known viruses
before transmission, it does not warrant that they are free from viruses
or other defects and accepts no liability for any losses resulting from
infected email transmission.

Visit  for information about the Driver Vehicle and Standards Agency.

The original of this email was scanned for viruses by the Government Secure Intranet virus
scanning service supplied by Vodafone in partnership with Symantec.
(CCTM Certificate Number 2009/09/0052.) This email has been certified virus free.
Communications via the GSi may be automatically logged, monitored and/or recorded for
legal purposes.


This all looks pretty genuine – they probably copied it verbatim with the exception of the “good afternoon”.

The payload is a Microsoft Word document with macros, but I’ve yet to figure out exactly what it’s doing. In the parlance of the security “industry” it’d be a zero-day exploit, but that’s not interesting. What did come as a bit of a surprise to me is that GSI doesn’t seem to bother with SPF records, which would have helped detect the fake. Bayesian analysis throws up nothing, and it’s coming from a clean IP address that has yet to be listed. The only things wrong with it are that there’s no reverse lookup, and no SPF on to flag it as dodgy.

The civil service clearly hasn’t got this security business clear yet.