back to article 'UK's Chernobyl' spam spreads Trojan

A widespread spam campaign claims that a nuclear power plant on the outskirts of London exploded on Tuesday afternoon. No such plant exists anywhere near London. The nearest is probably Dungeness B in south east Kent, some 77 miles (124km) by road from the capital. The email claims to offer pictures of victims. In reality, …


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  1. this

    on the versions that got through our spam filter the attachment was called Nice one.

  2. Mike Richards

    One reactor close to London

    Imperial runs the CONSORT reactor at its Silwood Park campus near Ascot. It's only a tiny research reactor and nothing like the RBMK reactors at Chernobyl. So its probably almost entirely unlikely to turn London into a glow-in-the-dark deathzone.

  3. Tim Bergel


    "subject lines such as 'Reply: A report on radiation contamination of Canada', suggesting that a Chernobyl-style nuclear calamity has befallen the UK"

    Am I missing something here? It looks to me that this suggests a Chernobyl-style disaster has befallen Canada, not the UK. Not that this is particularly important.

  4. Chris Miller

    Why Canada?

    I got one of these this morning (swiftly deleted). I wondered why Canada would be contaminated by an exploding 'UK' power plant outside London (leaving aside the obvious fact that any such explosion would be making rather large headlines).

    My guess is that the original spam referred to London, Ontario - although AFAIK the nearest nuke plant (Pickering) is about 80 miles from there.

    Don't the spam-merchants do any research?

  5. James


    Why would anyone think that was normal/safe?

    Since when did anyone begin emailing the news to random people, maybe it's me, do people really get their new by email from random addresses?

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    That's why the Anna Kournikova worm did so well," he added.

    The president of the company I was working for opened that one... Then a bunch of "Oh it's from the Boss, better open it" people clicked on it. About that time the Exchange server fell over.

    Normally email going down would result in a phone call every 2 minutes from the VIPs asking when it was going to be fixed, this time not a peep.

  7. Michael Tansley

    Interesting SPAM

    I got one of these yesterday in which I was informed that a nuclear reactor in a 'suburb of Ontario' exploded. Rather interesting since I live 5km away from a large reactor complex near Toronto. I didn't know that Ontario was a city with suburbs, I always thought it was a province of Canada.

    I seem to be alive unless of course the cubicle I'm sitting in is actually in the hot place which means that...... OH NO, infinity in a cubicle!!!

  8. Mart


    Do my eyes deceive me, or do the Google adverts on this page include one for the fake Antivirus Pro 2000 program? That seems unfortunate

  9. amanfromMars Silver badge

    God Particle Science ....... Jumps and Quantum Leaping .... Into Joint Singularities*

    It is Simply AI Sophisticated Attack on the Failing Currency System .... which appears to have Jammed Supply for Personalised XSSGain ..... a Most Unworthy Ploy/Play ...... and a Mistake for Removal from the Game ..... or MODified 42dDeliver Wealth to AlieNations ...... in AIVirtualised Reality for Future Infrastructure Construction ....

    * Paralleling Symmetries in Synch with Semantic Rapids Flow...... Wild White Water/Black Hole Jin Ju-ju at the Spiritual Control Levels.

  10. Bavenchkee Krycek

    MS should flog for this.

    Microsoft DRM monitoring system make sure that every Windows' user is using a legal copy of its OS, and office, and every week , or so it gets updated. Now, why can't Redmond expand this monitoring software to monitoring every one of the .exe being download from virus/keylogger free?

    Say, a user unknowningly downloaded "bad_girl_spanking.exe", and now Vista DRM Orwellian software kicks in -- check with big brother data if programs is good or not, and if it's not in the data based keep it in the data base, and user insists on installing on his computer -- and create a virtual folder and keep all the files there just to say what's its all about. If it did turn out to be a virus then user can delete the whole virtual folder -- combine this feature with ghost machine --- like college machine we can install anything on them but on restart they end up using a ghost image. This is what we really need.

    Linux because I love freedom.

  11. Benny

    @MS should flog for this.

    you're joking arent you....yes yes you must be.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    What I really don't get

    The Anna Kournikova thing was successful because Miss K was hot and finding porn online was a tad difficult at the time.

    Today, I'm sure that just typing "free porn" in Google Image Search is going to give a more than satisfactory result for those interested in such things. You may or may not find Anna K in the results, but I'm pretty sure you'll find plenty enough for your needs anyway. You'll probably even have to choose to view only large images to cut down on the numbers.

    So why open the bloody attachments any more ? If I want porn, I can find it by myself, thank you very much.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "@Bavenchkee Krycek"

    Please be joking, oh god please be joking, otherwise the creationists are right, and survival of the fittest is a lie, because theres no way someone as stupid as yourself could possibly survive.

  14. EnricoSuarve

    Conspiracy theory you say

    It's real I tell ya - da guvment cover up everything these days

    It was Fulham B that went up (don't even get me started on Fulham A)

    Jacqui Smith is a hoax - can't you see no ones that evil/thick?

    The housing crisis is engineered so that NuLab can buy all your homes

    </Paranoid Rant>

    Mines the one with the long arms and the buckles...

  15. Sceptical Bastard

    Same comment as usual

    Anyone gullible enough to open shite like this deserves to be infected with whatever's going (preferably by something that hijacks their Outlook Express and sends an "I am a moron and I'm hung like a gnat" email to their entire WAB list).

  16. Ron Eve


    Nice to see he's back on form...

    Completely hatstand.

  17. Gilbert Wham

    @ Bavenchkee Krycek

    Um, I think you just described an AV program, more or less.

  18. b166er


    sandboxie ?

    If MS did that, all the patchwinlogon.exe's would not work ;p

  19. E
    Paris Hilton

    Yup, John is smoking the very strong stuff

    Got a couple of those emails. The location of the reactor is not specified but it is said to be very close to Toronto.

    1) Canada and Toronto are not in the UK anymore (for quite some time too!) though we keep an association of convenience with the Commonwealth. So wtf is Leyden on about? Where were the editors - I know they exist because I've traded emails with them once?!

    2) There are a number of power reactors in the vicinity of Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

    3) The email plays on two things: there have been leaks in reactors in Ontario going back decades and there are some valid questions regarding the regulation of the reactors; various lobbies in Canada are trying to get licenses to build new reactors - in Ontario because the province needs power and has no hydro to speak of, and in Alberta to power the industrial processes that would turn tar sand into marketable oil.


    Only in Alberta would we consider building big nuclear power stations to generate the energy needed to turn abysmally low grade tar into oil that can be fed into a refinery. The few thinking people here (qua oil) have suggested that if we do build reactors we should just *sell the electricity* - but we are derided as leftists and communists.

    Go figure.

    Paris, because like the tar sands, there are better products out there.

  20. Elmer Phud
    IT Angle

    Gullibles Travels (part 6?)

    So, you get an email that says the world is about to end and, despite the radio being on and news-tickers littering the desktop, the first thing is to click on a link in an email. Just a smidgin (smidgeon) of thought would prevent the twitching finger from clicking but as office and home computers are now usually driven by the same people who watch 'car-crash T.V.' * it's inevitable that they will go for the thought of some disaster happening to someone else.

    It's poetic justice - they would wish nothing but piles of manure to drop on others and by their own hands (are we back to Paris vids?) drop themselves right in it. If I were religious I'd say it was Karma.

    *if you are in an office, have a look around, how many copies of the Sun and Hello etc. are in sight? Yup, you really are another resident of Rock Ridge.

  21. neil
    Paris Hilton

    What happened to Paris

    I had fun reading all the exploits of Ms. Hilton in the Spam titles. They seem to have dried up over the last couple of weeks.

  22. Marvin the Martian
    Thumb Up

    Should have used Springfield

    Because it's one of the most common city names in the US, you'd worry a lot more people with a <chemical explosion near Springfield> mail than <nuclear meltdown in Fairbanks Alaska>.

    London, Ontario + UK might be fine, but Exeter has 7 duplicates... not sure their total populations add up to the Ellowen Deeowen one though.

    But the <UK govt has hushed up existence of London reactor AND its explosion, fallout now in Canada> plot is semi-smart -- I'd expect pollution to reach sweden or danmark first.

  23. Anonymous Coward

    Probably took the lead from Spooks: Code 9

    Which had a nuclear explosion in London in 2012.

    Not the best series I have ever seen, but not the worst (bonekickers still holds that place in my heart).

  24. Gav Silver badge

    In London?

    What's funniest here is the idea that a nuclear reactor would be built anywhere near civil servant desks and suburb abodes in the outskirts of London. Think what it would do to the property values!

    But of course, they used London because that's the only place the average dupe is likely to have heard of.

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    There was a (training) reactor in London... was at the (former) naval college in Greenwich. Mark Thomas did a piece on it and when I was at uni there I found what I believe was the former site - a large patch of concrete near the main road.

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