Feeds

MS security centre search poisoned with infectious smut

Chapeau-noir SEOs seed results with seediness

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

Microsoft has disabled the search results on its Security Centre after malware-spreaders abused the function to promote shady pornographic websites serving Trojans as well as cheap thrills.

Only the Security Section of Microsoft's website was affected by the search-engine poisoning attack. Such attacks are often used to place scareware portals and the like high in the index of searches for terms in the news, such as royal weddings, celebrity deaths and natural disasters.

In the case of the Microsoft security search results, only searches for a limited range of terms return links to dodgy sites. These search terms include "porn" or "streaming" (a much more plausible search term for someone visiting the centre and presumably looking for security-related information rather than cheap thrills). Many of these sites are serving up malware as well as smut, net security firm GFI Software warns.

"Since only specific terms are used, if you search using a different term, say 'united nations', you'll get real, normal results," explains Alex Eckelberry of GFI Software.

"In other words, blackhat SEOs are seeding illegitimate search results within the Microsoft search results. Pretty tricky and impressive. There are a number of ways this could be done (for example, using the ability on the site to Twitter a search result)."

In an update, Eckelberry added that Microsoft has temporarily disabled the search feature on its Security Centre, presumably while it cleans out its search index. ®

New hybrid storage solutions

More from The Register

next story
Apple Pay is a tidy payday for Apple with 0.15% cut, sources say
Cupertino slurps 15 cents from every $100 purchase
Google recommends pronounceable passwords
Super Chrome goes into battle with Mr Mxyzptlk
Infosec geniuses hack a Canon PRINTER and install DOOM
Internet of Stuff securo-cockups strike yet again
Reddit wipes clean leaked celeb nudie pics, tells users to zip it
Now we've had all THAT TRAFFIC, we 'deplore' this theft
YouTube, Amazon and Yahoo! caught in malvertising mess
Cisco says 'Kyle and Stan' attack is spreading through compromised ad networks
TorrentLocker unpicked: Crypto coding shocker defeats extortionists
Lousy XOR opens door into which victims can shove a foot
Greater dev access to iOS 8 will put us AT RISK from HACKERS
Knocking holes in Apple's walled garden could backfire, says securo-chap
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile
Data demand and the rise of virtualization is challenging IT teams to deliver storage performance, scalability and capacity that can keep up, while maximizing efficiency.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
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.