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Beware Of Fake Anti-virus Software

fake antivirusA recent study, presented by Google at the Usenix Worshop on Large-Scale Exploits and Emergent Threats in California, warns that “fake software security programs are being rigged to infect computers on a large scale”. This warning could not have come at a better time as Scammers successfully trick more people into installing malicious code on their computers. The study analysed 240 million Web pages during the past 13 months (January 2009 – February 2010) and discovered that fake anti-virus programs accounted for 15% of all malicious software  detected.

This rise in malicious attacks appear to be on par with the rise in prevalence of other forms of Web-based malware – a clearly defined upward trend in the number of fake anti-virus domains that are encountered each week. According to the report, Scammers trick Internet users with fake Websites that generate pop-up messages which warn users that “so-called” scans have been performed on their computer and X amount of viruses or bad programs have been found on their machines. The result of this false alarm is that those people who are convinced that their computer is infected with a virus are then tricked into downloading fake anti-virus products that are loaded with malware that may actually harm the victim’s computer or steal private data.

Although Google has been using refined tools to filter out booby-trapped Websites, hackers have also been responding by switching domains to avoid detection, with over 11,000 Web domains discovered to be involved in the distribution of fake anti-virus through adverts during this study. Computer users are therefore advised to ignore suspicious Websites or pop-up messages and use only trusted anti-virus software on their machines. Furthermore, do not register or buy any security tool that you are unsure of regardless of its appearance especially if you already have anti-virus installed on your computer.

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What else can be done to avoid becoming a victim of fake anti-virus software?

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10 Comments

10 Comments

  1. Pingback: Tweets that mention Beware of Fake Anti-virus Software -- Topsy.com

  2. Mobile Games

    April 29, 2010 at 4:37 pm

    ya i had also faced these types of messages several times but i ignore them generally.They generate the pop-up in such a way that it looks real and lot of peoples are influenced by this.

  3. Filme online gratis

    April 30, 2010 at 6:26 pm

    i like very much this post
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  4. elbuscator

    April 30, 2010 at 8:14 pm

    Be careful of malware.
    Nice post.

  5. Sue

    May 1, 2010 at 9:37 am

    I think google is planning to make their own anti-virus that’s why they’re trying to destroy other anti-virus reputations…
    .-= Sue´s last blog ..Ways To Keep the Honeymoon Stress-Free =-.

  6. Bit Doze

    May 11, 2010 at 7:24 pm

    Google for sure is planing to build their own anti virus I am curious to see what it will came out of this.

  7. Domain name registration

    May 25, 2010 at 9:02 am

    People should beware of the type of the anti-virus that are online today, and it is better to stick to the well know anti-virus software’s.

  8. Eva Schildersbedrijf

    August 2, 2010 at 5:55 pm

    “The study analysed 240 million Web pages during the past 13 months (January 2009 – February 2010) [..]”, That is a large and in-depth study!

  9. Bingo Fever

    October 28, 2010 at 12:26 am

    I had a virus not long ago that just redirected Google results. It did not matter what you typing into Google you was redirected to a related shopping site. Was really hard to get rid of too.

  10. Janis Gagliardi

    August 7, 2011 at 4:01 pm

    These scammers…fortunately I’ve not been fooled. Not all computer users are geeks nor are all internet savvy now how safe are these people? Every user is interested in getting the best Anti virus and getting a fake anti virus will be a very unpleasant experience.

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