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Gooner fan site nobbled by malware

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An Arsenal fan site has been compromised to serve up sophisticated malware. Malicious code smuggled onto Onlinegooner.com redirected users to sites in Asia and Russia that download a wide variety of nasties onto vulnerable Windows PCs.

The downloaded malware contains a potent cocktail of rootkit, keylogging, backdoor, ARP (Address Resolution Protocol) poisoning, and DNS (Domain name system) spoofing capabilities.

An analysis by net filtering firm ScanSafe suggests the seeding of the malware happened around 18 February, just before a Champions League match between the English football side and AC Milan that ended in a scoreless draw. The horrific injury of Brazilian-born Croatian star Eduardo da Silva in last weekend's Premiership game with Birmingham City on 23 February probably played into the hands of hackers by driving traffic to the popular site, which has been providing independent news to Arsenal fans for over ten years.

It's unclear if Onlinegooner.com has cleaned up the infection at the time of writing. We've dropped an email to the site's webmaster and will update this story once we get a reply.

Attacks targeting sports fans are uncommon but not unprecedented.

New York Jets gridiron fans were targeted in a similar attack back in January, Trend Micro notes. The presence of malicious code, often served up via tainted ads from third parties, on legitimate sites has become a greater problem over recent months.

For example, malware-laced ads were appearing on ITV.com and Radio Times earlier this month before both sites were cleaned up. Rogue ads infiltrated Expedia and Rhapsody in a separate attack in late January. ®

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