Zscaler Cautions About Rising Prevalence of Fake Movie Downloads

According to the security researchers at cloud security provider Zscaler, there has been an increase in the incidences of fake movie downloads and streaming websites, which trick users into installing spyware on their systems or scam money from them.

Zscaler notifies that people looking for information regarding new movies online get themselves directed to malicious pages, which are placed at the top slots of search engine results through black hat search engine optimization techniques.

The security firm points out that the most famous free movie scam operates around websites such as, movie-source.org, letbobwatchthis.org, hatfilmsite.org, letmewatchthis.com or letswatchsomething.com. All these websites appear in a similar format and displayed a list of movies along with a big "Download Now" link for every file.

In reality, these websites do not harbor any sort of movie files. In case, if a user downloads a movie file, he is redirected to the website movie-watching-site.com, and then after few minutes he is again automatically directed to www.movie-watching-site.com.powered-by.securewebsiteaccess.com. At that particular web page, users are asked to download the browser plugin 'ClickPotato'.

As per the website, the ClickPotato add-on provides users with unlimited and free of cost access to all of the famous TV shows and movies online.

On the other hand, in reality, this executable is a famous spyware known as Hotbar (presently unidentified by 60% of AV vendors). Anything else can't be done on this website. Once a user downloads an executable, web page doesn't change.

In case, if a user doesn't start downloading or clicks on cancel, then he is again directed back to movie-watching-site.com, but comes again back to the same webpage on www.movie-watching-site.com.powered-by.securewebsiteaccess.com.movie-watching-site.com where users are also convinced to download another spyware hidden as VLC, a famous open-source video player.

According to the security firm there is no scarcity of video websites on the Internet that claim to be authentic but in actually are malware-ridden websites. However, there are only some websites that actually provide authentic TV or film downloading, and even less with free offers.

Commenting on the issue, Julien Sobrier, Senior Security Researcher at Zscaler stated that, if users get such kind of offers from other websites then they should not accept them to avoid installing spyware on their machines and saving their money, as reported by Softpedia on November 3, 2010.

Related article: Zscaler Forecasts Security Trends for 2010

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