“Hello kitten” – malware spammed out in sexy picture email

Graham Cluley
Graham Cluley
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@gcluley

Do you know anyone who might call you “kitten”?

Do you have a woman from your past (I assume she’s a woman as she signs herself off as ‘your mistress’), with only the loosest grasp of the English language?

Is she in the habit of sending you sexy photos?

If you answered yes to any of the above questions, then you might be at risk of a virus infection – especially if you receive an email with the subject line “I am free… :)” looking like this:

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Malicious hello kitten email

Whatever you do – don’t open that attachment. Even though it pretends to be a digital photograph made on a Pentax camera, it’s nothing of the sort.

The email isn’t really from an old flame, and the attached file isn’t really a sexy photo but a copy of the Troj/Agent-ICW Trojan horse.

Combining good security products with an attitude of “think with your head, not with your trousers” should provide your computer with a higher level of defence.

(By the way, long term readers of the Clu-blog should not get confused between this malware and the Hello Kitty anti-virus software we previous told you about.)


Graham Cluley is an award-winning keynote speaker who has given presentations around the world about cybersecurity, hackers, and online privacy. A veteran of the computer security industry since the early 1990s, he wrote the first ever version of Dr Solomon's Anti-Virus Toolkit for Windows, makes regular media appearances, and is the co-host of the popular "Smashing Security" podcast. Follow him on Twitter, Mastodon, Threads, Bluesky, or drop him an email.

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