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Webroot Detected & Eliminated Several Bogus Antiviruses in May 2009

According to the security company 'Webroot', in May 2009, it actively detected and blocked several versions of antivirus programs that turned out highly spurious. Further, it caught and eliminated some extremely nasty malware infesting the Web during May 2009.

Andrew Brandt, Threat Expert at Webroot, stated that the company removed several threats which included fake security products and 'Fakealerts', as reported by SCMagazine on June 11, 2009. Brandt said that following a break by the company for a number of months, it seemed that the creators of the above kinds of malware were returning.

Describing a Fakealert, the security specialists at Webroot said - it is an adware but different from conventional adverts. The pop-up appears to be formal-looking windows with warning messages or dialog boxes mentioning an error.

Brandt explained, Fakealerts publicize their messages to unwitting people for the main reason of tricking them into downloading and executing a program, which resembles a system application or a security product like an antivirus or anti-spyware. This program poses as a real scan that detects non-existing malware on the user's PC.

Brandt further explains that these 'scans' are mostly nothing but Flash animations. Since they execute themselves on all operating systems, which are capable of showing a Flash movie, one could also make them scan a Linux or Mac computer and detect malevolent files within the file system sections while they do not really exist, Brandt stated.

At times, the miscreants pushing these adverts cleverly place a bogus 'close box' on the right side of the Fakealert so that the user becomes convinced and clicks on the ad box's active field, said the security company.

Thus, Webroot suggests anyone finding this type of ad on the screen should press the Alt key and continue pressing while hitting the F4 key on his keyboard. This will remove the ad box without clicking at any place inside it.

Additionally, security experts advised, users need to maintain vigilance against possible scams and frauds while also install up-to-date threat definitions on their computers.

Related article: Webroot Detects Malware in Presidential Campaign Videos

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