The Central Bank of Russia issued a warning about a new email scam that offers users to order new national debit cards ‘Mir’.

The phishing emails contain the description of a new national system of payment cards and offer to fill in the attached form to get this new debit card. The malicious code in the attachment allows scammers to load malware to users' PCs. The emails are being sent on behalf of established credit institutions using authentic email addresses. Some emails were sent on behalf of one of the largest banks in Russia, Sberbank, according to the Kommersant news portal.

The Central Bank of Russia warns users that the scam email can be recognised by the diversity of the payment methods and features offered, e.g. the access to cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin digital currency.

The national payment card system ‘Mir’ (which has a dual meaning in Russian — ‘World’ and `Peace') is planned to be launched in Russia in December 2015. The system will be integrated with MasterCard cards. However, the developers of the new card are not planning to integrate with Visa, PayPal, WebMoney, Qiwi, or bitcoin currency, as it is claimed in the phishing emails.

Earlier this month, the national card ‘Mir’ announced its new logo proposed and selected during a national competition. The card was created in July 2014 in response to the economic sanctions imposed on Russia by the international community, its creation  approved by the president Vladimir Putin.


Aliona Chapel