Bill Cosby Death Rumors Spread Scareware
Security researchers have cautioned Web surfers that the searching for information about the rumor of popular actor and comedian 'Bill Cosby' death could result in scareware installation. 'Scareware' means a software made to scare computer users into paying for cleansing their systems off viruses and other malware which in reality are non-existent.
Hackers, apparently pounding on the trendy search topic, are crafting malicious websites that pose as news reports from CNN regarding the actor's demise.
Appearing as top search results, these poisoned websites provide cyber criminals a continuous traffic of unwitting Web surfers looking for details of Bill Cosby.
The websites aim to deceive users to make them download FAKEAV or bogus antivirus software. As soon as the programs are loaded on a PC, they keep showing warning messages about non-existent malware infections, recommending that the user should pay for a license so that his computer can be cleaned.
More information suggests that the fake news of Cosby's death seems to have begun from Twitter, wherein unwitting users ironically fed to further stimulate the flames.
Meanwhile, Bill Cosby himself has communicated through his website to his fans that he is alive.
Sophos, an Internet security company probing into the malicious news, has detected the scareware from the websites exploiting the ongoing trendy subject as Mal/FakeAV-BW.
Emphasizing that such rumors are highly vulnerable, Graham Cluley, Senior Technology Consultant at Sophos, states that everyone should learn a lesson from the current incident - people should never spread news about current hot stories unless they have referred to a trustworthy Internet site and verified the related facts. Furthermore, they should be careful about following web-links taking on unfamiliar sites. Finally, antivirus software should always be kept up-to-date on personal computers so that every web-page accessed is duly scanned, as reported by Sophos on February 8, 2010.
Other similar incidences of exploitation of celebrity death rumors include the victimization of Johnny Depp and Kenya West recently with such malevolent scams. Still others like author Stephanie Meyer and Hollywood star George Clooney too have been targeted likewise during 2009.
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» SPAMfighter News - 15-02-2010