If you’ve ever been up late at night watching TV, odds are you’ve seen those commercials where exasperated PC users just can’t wrangle their computers into submission. Error screens! Frustrating download times! The worst. Who can save you from such a fate? Any of the various PC cleanup applications hawked on TV and the Internet. But can they really, or are we just getting scared into coughing up fees for useless services? [More]
Researchers have proposed a new method for detecting trojan viruses embedded into hardware chips by using voltage detectors that “sing out” in a different frequency when they’re used on a tampered circuit. [More]
On the cusp of a big Apple event today where a new iPhone is expected to be announced, fake emails are going around purporting to give details of “the new Apple iPhone5GS,” featuring a see-through keyboard. Clicking on the links leads to a malware-laced website that targets PCs. Here’s the email and what to look out for. [More]
Google has started putting a yellow box with a warning at the top of search results pages for users who may have been infected with a certain kind of malware. [More]
Apple will soon be releasing an update to its operating system that will seek out and remove copies on users’ computers of “Mac Defender,” a fake antivirus program that tricks the unwary into forking over their credit card info. [More]
After the Feds and Microsoft in March chopped off the head of the hydra that was the 1-million strong “Rustock” botnet responsible for sending billions of spam, several heads have sprung in its place. PC World notes a Symantec report of a 24% jump in emails containing malicious links and attachments, possibly representing an attempt to regrow the forces of zombie controlled computers and fill the void left by Rustock. [More]
The illicit economy of phishers and malware perpetrators is growing more sophisticated, and more brazen. “Bulletproof” hosting sites that offered to protect their users from attacks and takedown requests now have corporate-like web pages offering a menu of a la carte services. The only limit is no spam and no porn. Hey, even they have standards. [More]
I have no idea why anyone would be searching online for Cameron Diaz screensavers, but according to McAfee, if you feel the need to fill up your monitor with a pic of the thespian, you’re putting your computer in harm’s way. [More]
If you’re still using Windows XP SP2, you’re about to be on your own. Today Microsoft releases its final security update for Service Pack 2 (the 32-bit version, at least). [More]
Last week at a symposium on information security at Harvard, researchers presented the truly shocking results of their investigation — Going to random porn sites could be putting your personal information at risk! (Insert sound of jaws dropping here). [More]
If you use McAfee’s anti-virus program and have Windows XP with SP 3, you may have noticed last week that your PC was shutting down every 60 seconds. That was because McAfee pushed out an update that it now admits wasn’t properly tested. To apologize, the company says it will reimburse you for repairs (although it hasn’t provided details on this yet), and it’s offering everyone who was affected a free 2-year extension of the service. Should you take the offer and call it even? Seth Rosenblatt at Cnet says you shouldn’t bother. [More]
A former BoA IT worker has agreed to plead guilty to installing malware on the bank’s ATM machines in order to withdraw money whenever he felt like it, reports Wired. According to the plea agreement, his total take from the crime was between $200-400k. The bank won’t disclose how he did it or what the malware was like, but earlier this month Visa announced that new malware has hit the U.S. that could not only capture customers’ PINs and card data, but also give the criminal the ability to empty the machine of any cash that was in it. [More]
In the wide world of scams, this combination of a phone call and computer malware is sort of a novel twist. Jay likes to string phone scammers along to waste their time, so he managed to get quite a few details about how this particular scam works. If you’ve got naive family members with access to computers, either take away their computers or tell them never to download software from a stranger on the phone. [More]
An email claiming to be from the FDIC is making the rounds on the internet. It supposedly contains a “personal FDIC insurance file” that is really some sort of badness that will ruin your day. Do not click.
Scammers pretending to buy ads for Suzuki tricked Gawker’s ad sales team last week into running malware-laced ads that installed spyware and crashed the browsers of some readers before they were caught and pulled.
Just when you thought that you and your ATM card data were safe from criminal eyes, Scientific American brings a different sort of threat. This time, the skimmers are inside the machine. Malware within the ATM itself harvests enough data to do some very bad things.