Detection made of a strong variant of rogue security products and Fakealerts

News by SC Staff

May saw the detection and prevention of strong variants of rogue anti-virus.

May saw the detection and prevention of strong variants of rogue anti-virus.


Webroot threat expert Andrew Brandt claimed that among the spies taken out were ‘Fakealerts' and rogue security product. After taking a hiatus for several months, the makers of these types of malware appear to be making a comeback.


Brandt claimed that a Fakealert is just a piece of adware but unlike traditional adverts, the pop-up takes on the appearance of official-looking error dialogs and Windows-esque warning messages. Many present themselves as clones of the Windows Security Center control panel, or as a voice-bubble pop-up from the System Tray.


Brandt said: “Fakealerts push their particular brand of stale baloney on the unsuspecting public for one reason, they want to trick you into downloading and running a program that looks, for all intents and purposes, like a system utility or an anti-spyware or anti-virus product. The program displays realistic-looking ‘scans' that ‘find' allegedly malicious files on your computer.


“The joke of these ‘scans' is that they're often no more than Flash animations. Because they run on any operating system that can display a Flash video, you can even get them to ‘scan' a Mac or Linux box, and ‘find' malicious files in parts of the file system that don't even exist on those platforms. Oh well, you can't blame a fraudster for trying.”


Webroot claimed that sometimes the people behind these ads even put a fake ‘close box' in the upper right hand corner of the Fakealert message, to trick the user into clicking inside the active area of the ad window.


“The bottom-line message to you is that while you should remain vigilant against potential frauds and scams, keeping your PC updated with the latest threat definitions is equally if not more important,” said Brandt.


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