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Warning: iPad Web Searches Scams are Out

Posted on February 4, 2010
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Web security companies and web site operators are on guard of possible iPad -related search scams. This is the latest news circling around the web today, which alarmed several web operators about the iPad web searches.

“This is just the kind of opportunity fraudsters like to exploit by poisoning search terms,” said Symantec’s Candid Wueest.

According to Wueest, everyone should be warned that the iPad-related spam and phish attacks will strike consumers hard on the following weeks.

Don Debolt, CA’s director of threat research, warned about during an interview that “black hat search optimization”–a scam whereby hackers grab the opportunity out of security errors in blogs and other sites that makes use PHP to insert popular search terms like iPad to deceive search engines and mislead online users to accommodate legitimate sites that are not related to the present subject matter.

If someone clicks on the link to a page on that infected site they are then redirected to a malicious site which can implant malware on their machine or tempt them to install a rogue security product.

According to CNET News, it has nothing to do with the iPad itself. Related techniques have made use of other popular searches such as the recent Haitian earthquake and the Michael Jackson’s controversial death. Google has a trends page that shows hot topics and hot searches. It was revealed that the iPad was represented four times on the top-10 list. “Obama State of the Union” led the list  last Thursday afternoon.

“We found that it’s a very systematic and programmatic process right now,” Debolt said.

“The attackers are using software to query search engines to find out the popular search topics and then feeding that information into compromised web sites so that those compromised sites and the content they put on those sites get indexed by the search engine bots,” added Debolt.

Source:  CNET

 
 

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