Friday, December 5, 2008

A week for viruses

This week has seen quite a few new viruses pop up.  

On Facebook, a virus that presents itself as a link to a video and then seduces you to click on what looks like a youtube video site.  When you try to play the video you are told that you need to upgrade your video player by downloading this program...... simple as that.

The result is that your computer becomes part of what has become a zombie.  It will forward passwords that you use to connect to banking sites or places where you might use your credit card numbers.

Then, a new virus that installs itself into Firefox also targeting sensitive information for links to banking and credit card payment information that you might have on your computer.

Of course there was also the virus that I mentioned earlier this week that one of my colleagues managed to get on his computer.

We are so used to people sending things to us on social networking sites and via email that we often don't really check what it is that we are opening before we do.  I have to say that I really don't open ANY of the attachments that are mailed to me if they are unexpected or appear to be files of a type I don't trust. 

So usually, I would be fine opening images that are jpg formatted, but not slideshows that are sent around as executables.  I am more trusting of links to established web sites that host images or movies (youtube, flickr etc.) but it is entirely possible that the link you get sent in your mail message is a fake link that sends you to a different location.

So be cautious of what you click on when you get sent stuff!

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