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YouTube Videos Link Users to Malicious Web Pages

Security firm PandaLabs has spotted about 30,000 video files on YouTube, a website for video sharing, along with messages having links that take the user to a malware hosting website.

The company's security investigators state that the messages are usually indicative. They also add that if users click on the web links, they will be taken to a legitimate page having pornographic content.

But when the links are clicked, a fake page appears created to load malware. Reportedly, the page prompts the user to download a file online to apparently watch the video, but when the user does that, it results in the download of a malware-ridden antivirus application.

This malware poses to run a system scan and supposedly spots a number of viruses that actually do not exist. It then suggests the user to purchase the paid edition of the AV to apparently clear his PC off the viruses.

The security researchers state that the eventual purpose of the online criminals is to earn revenue by selling the paid edition of the phony antivirus. Earlier, attacks of this kind have been observed on websites like Facebook and Digg.com. Employing this approach, Internet scammers are yet again demonstrating how popular Web 2.0 websites could be attacked to distribute malicious programs, the researchers elucidated.

Luis Corrons, Technical Director, PandaLabs, said that it was not the first time that malicious messages were being used on YouTube, as reported by DarkReading on May 22, 2009. According to Corrons, the alarming part was the large number of web links that the company detected and found them connected to a common page. This indicates to the employment of automation tools by cyber criminals for the publication of their messages.

According to the security researchers, YouTube has been making headlines for past few days. Some pornographic movies have been flooding the site as part of a well-organized attack. The movies used the names of teenage stars like Jonas Brothers and Hannah Montana and could be distributing malicious software, the researchers said.

Related article: YouTube Video on Kim Jong-il Disseminating Malware

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