Feeds

Mystery web attack hijacks your clipboard

No, Macs are not immune

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

A new web-based attack is making the rounds that tries to spread poisonous links by hijacking end users' clipboards.

Forum discussions here, here, here, here and elsewhere all report the same thing: the commenter surfs to a seemingly legitimate site (MSNBC.com comes up more than once) and suddenly a malicious link is copied to the clipboard. The rogue link remains even after the user copies a new batch of text. The only way to remove it is to reboot the computer.

The attack has been reported by Firefox users running both OS X and Windows, but we wouldn't be surprised to hear that other browsers and operating systems are also vulnerable. It's unclear exactly how the attack spreads. The Spyware Sucks blog posits here that banner ads transmitting bad Adobe Flash code is responsible, and that makes sense to us.

If you've encountered this attack, please leave a comment below detailing exactly where you encountered it.

Those behind the attack appear intent on propagating a link (for the record, it's xp-vista-update.net, but we recommend staying away) that claims users' PCs are petri dishes hopelessly infected with malware unless they are immediately cleaned by a fraudulent anti-malware program. By permanently attaching the link to the clipboard, attackers are betting the user will paste it in emails, blog posts or directly into a browser's address bar.

Attacks like these are another reason why running the NoScript extension on Firefox makes a lot of sense. It's not perfect, but it can insulate you from a huge amount of the attack code floating around on the web. ®

Remote control for virtualized desktops

More from The Register

next story
Knock Knock tool makes a joke of Mac AV
Yes, we know Macs 'don't get viruses', but when they do this code'll spot 'em
Feds seek potential 'second Snowden' gov doc leaker – report
Hang on, Ed wasn't here when we compiled THIS document
Why weasel words might not work for Whisper
CEO suspends editor but privacy questions remain
DEATH by PowerPoint: Microsoft warns of 0-day attack hidden in slides
Might put out patch in update, might chuck it out sooner
BlackEnergy crimeware coursing through US control systems
US CERT says three flavours of control kit are under attack
prev story

Whitepapers

Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
New hybrid storage solutions
Tackling data challenges through emerging hybrid storage solutions that enable optimum database performance whilst managing costs and increasingly large data stores.
Mitigating web security risk with SSL certificates
Web-based systems are essential tools for running business processes and delivering services to customers.