Friday, December 25, 2009

The CyberCriminal way

Cybercriminals. They are around every corner on the internet. Now is good time to remind your family and co-workers how they work and how to practice safe browsing.

History/Why?: The plan for these criminals, and they are, is stealing your data for profit, stealing your identification. They use malware, worms and viruses. Every piece of malware actually has hundreds of versions and they now have to ability to shut down your protection. If you don’t regularly scan your systems, you probably have something on your system for days, months and in some situations, years.
Antivirus programs are constantly being hammered on new variants of virus/Trojans, malware and worms. It is very easy for virus writers to create new variants weekly. The AV industry is seeing about 40k NEW pieces of malware created weekly. To give some perspective, one antivirus vendor wrote a couple dozen new virus signatures per week two years ago. Today that vendor is generating 15,000 to 20,000 signatures every single day, reaching 2.5 million as of this month

Here is what to keep an eye out for:
Threats have now shifted from email to Web-based, end users(co-workers/family) need to know that their surfing/browsing patters  are being closely watched by cybercriminals/hackers. Check this out:
Cybercrimals, via Google searching, can determine what the top 10 search topics are, and hack those resulted sites, and infect them with malware. Injecting well-known, legitimate Web sites with malware infections: schools, retailers, small business are being targeted. These sites can be easy targets, because they don't usually have a full a strong IT company watching for criminal activities.

Here are other method to look out for:
Social engineering attacks. These hide in files the user is accessing, and aim to entice the user into downloading and installing the threat. Popular social- networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter are targets because they provide potential access to the largest audiences.
Email download games/application. These are examples of what his happening with FACEBOOK games and groups. This also is coming from other popular social media sites. These apps look innocent and you think they can be trusted. You cannot. Never download anything you don’t know what exactly  it is.
Website redirection / Email link redirections: . They will send you bank or financial looking monthly statements, asking you to login. If you look at the actual URL it will redirect you to a malware fake website.
Graphic and media content: File sharing websites, pictures attached to emails, streaming media and Instant Messaging services.

Sadly, desktop antivirus programs don't always catch zero-day (not yet detected) malware and viruses, so the best defense against emerging threats is to practice safe Internet habits.
Additionally users should look at Email hygiene applications and additional hardware Spam/malware protection solutions that watch everything you do on the internet and can help protect you.

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