Friday, May 6, 2011

The U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation warned computer users Tuesday that messages claiming to include photos and videos of Osama bin Laden's death actually contain a virus that could steal personal information.
The FBI said in a press release that emails with supposed links to bin Laden death photos or videos could unleash a virus that can damage computers.
The warning comes as security companies said that they've spotted the first samples of malicious software disguised as photos of the dead Al Qaeda leader.
U.S. authorities do have photos of bin Laden, who was shot in the head during an early morning raid Monday in Pakistan. But these photos have not been released publicly.
The FBI warned Internet users to watch out for fake messages on social network sites and to never download software in order to view a video. "Read e-mails you receive carefully. Fraudulent messages often feature misspellings, poor grammar, and non-standard English," the FBI warning stated.
As a major international news event, bin Laden's death has shown the amazing way information can spread online. Many learned of the terrorist leader's death through Twitter, where the story first broke, or Facebook. But it also underscores how the unfiltered media can quickly spread bad information worldwide.
Cybercriminals, looking to get your personal information by having you click on a link, or spammers trying to get you to buy rogue anti-virus software the same way, are also "liking" Facebook - and Twitter - a lot in recent days to "spread malicious links claiming to be images of bin Laden's death.
Cyber Security Expert Shubham Sahu said that criminals are e-mailing a password-stealing Trojan horse program called Banload to victims, and Symantec said its seen criminals spamming victims with links to fake "Osama dead" news articles that launch Web-based attacks on visitors.
Scammers have also used a technique called search engine poisoning to try to trick search engines into listing hacked Web pages that are loaded with malware in their search results. “It's unlikely you'll find pictures or videos of Bin Laden's death online - but searching for one will certainly take you to sites with malware”

Cyber Security Researcher Mukesh Tiwari says that users are encouraged to cut and paste malicious JavaScript code into their browser, which then sends the message to all of their Facebook friends and never to cut and paste scripts into the browser.

Recommendations for computer users:
•Adjust the privacy settings on social networking sites you frequent to make it more difficult for people you know and do not know to post content to your page. Even a "friend" can unknowingly pass on multimedia that's actually malicious software.
•Do not agree to download software to view videos. These applications can infect your computer.
•Read e-mails you receive carefully. Fraudulent messages often feature misspellings, poor grammar, and nonstandard English

Publish date :- 06.05.2011 (Central Chronicle)