Feeds

Hackers hop onto royal engagement search results

Malwarey Middleton meddling by miscreants

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

Knaves, scoundrels and traitors to the crown took only minutes to leap onto yesterday's news of the royal engagement in a bid to expose sentimentally patriotic surfers to malware.

Links to malicious sites appeared prominently in Google searches for Kate Middleton. Malicious downloads are offered to surfers under the guise of a Firefox update, as explained in a blog post by GFI Software here.

Net security firm Websense adds that Prince William-themed search terms have also been poisoned, in many cases towards redirecting surfers towards sites touting rogue anti-virus (scareware).

Our prediction yesterday that the Royal Wedding announcement might be abused as a theme for malware scams was always an odds-on bet.

Websense recently reported that 22.4 per cent of all searches for current news leads to malicious search results, a figure that probably increases for the biggest stories such as the Royal wedding engagement announcement and last year's death of Michael Jackson.

The process of manipulating search results - black hat search engine optimisation - has been going on for at least three or four years and is increasingly becoming automated. Hackers affiliated with scareware outfits in the Ukraine, Russia and elsewhere carry out the coding work. ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
'Kim Kardashian snaps naked selfies with a BLACKBERRY'. *Twitterati gasps*
More alleged private, nude celeb pics appear online
Hackers pop Brazil newspaper to root home routers
Step One: try default passwords. Step Two: Repeat Step One until success
UK.gov lobs another fistful of change at SME infosec nightmares
Senior Lib Dem in 'trying to be relevant' shocker. It's only taxpayers' money, after all
Spies would need SUPER POWERS to tap undersea cables
Why mess with armoured 10kV cables when land-based, and legal, snoop tools are easier?
TOR users become FBI's No.1 hacking target after legal power grab
Be afeared, me hearties, these scoundrels be spying our signals
Snowden, Dotcom, throw bombs into NZ election campaign
Claim of tapped undersea cable refuted by Kiwi PM as Kim claims extradition plot
Freenode IRC users told to change passwords after securo-breach
Miscreants probably got in, you guys know the drill by now
THREE QUARTERS of Android mobes open to web page spy bug
Metasploit module gobbles KitKat SOP slop
BitTorrent's peer-to-peer chat app Bleep goes live as public alpha
A good day for privacy as invisble.im also reveals its approach to untraceable chats
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
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?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.