Trend Micro discovered a variant of the Trickbot banking trojan (detected by Trend Micro as TrojanSpy.Win32.TRICKBOT.THDEAI) using a redirection URL in a spam email. In this particular case, the variant used Google to redirect from the URL hxxps://google[.]dm:443/url?q=<trickbot downloader>, whereby the URL in the query string, url?q=<url>, is the malicious URL that the user is redirected to. The redirection URL is a way to sidestep spam filters that may block Trickbot at the onset.
At first glance, the spam email could pass as legitimate, even adding social media icons for good measure. The content indicates a processed order that is ready for shipping. The mail then goes into detail with the freight number for the package, delivery disclaimer, and contact details of the seller. The cybercriminals used the Google redirection URL in the email to trick unwitting users and deflect from the hyperlinks’ actual intention. Moreover, since the URL is from a known site, it lends some air of authenticity to the email and redirection.
Source: Trend Micro