June 17th, 2004, 02:16 PM
Spying on spyware
Source : http://zdnet.com.com/2100-1104_2-523...=zdfd.newsfeed
EarthLink and Webroot Software released a report Wednesday, revealing that nearly one of every three computers scanned in April for Trojan horse programs or system monitor spyware was infected.
Internet access provider EarthLink and security software maker Webroot scanned nearly 421,000 computers for their April Spy Audit report. Trojan horses and system monitors accounted for 133,715 pieces of the spyware found on those computers--representing almost one in three machines.
System monitors track users' computer activity, capturing virtually everything they do online. Trojan horses appear to be software programs a user has requested but actually aid hackers in stealing computer data. That information is then used to gain unrestricted access to users' computers while they are online.
"Consumers should be aware of the applications and files residing and running on their machines," Matt Cobb, Earthlink's core applications vice president, said in a statement. "While certain types of spyware are malicious, other programs can be used to improve their Internet experience."
Security experts note that the damage from Trojan horses or system monitors can sometimes be more severe than adware and adware cookies typically found on PCs.
When adding all four types of spyware found on the scanned computers during April, the Spy Audit Report found 11.3 million instances of spyware on the computers. That averaged 26.9 pieces of spyware per machine.
In March, 237,200 PCs were scanned, with 7.1 million pieces of spyware found on the computers. That averaged 30 pieces of spyware per PC, according to the report.
June 17th, 2004, 06:08 PM
Sadly, this is largely due to users being unaware. One of my good friends got a new computer yesterday. When I asked her what she was going to install, I was less than pleased to hear kazaa was going to be an addition.
Then when asking her that if her virus definitions were up to date, the response was "well I just got it today" *shakes head* .... sigh..
June 17th, 2004, 11:33 PM
I believe their figures are darn accurate. My son must be trying to set a record on how many times I have to yank his HDD out and perform an exorcism on it (3 times in a short time frame). Even though we have installed AV, Spybot, Adaware, a Firewall, etc., etc., etc., He still gets infected. How is this happening: anime sites, IM programs, Kazaa, and the like. He's easily drawn into the "download this syndrome".
IMHO folks are really becoming proficient at social engineering in verbal and non-verbal communication.
So I'm adding a Registry Monitor to stop it in it's tracks, and also see if SpywareBlaster will assist as well with the other nasties. If anyone else has any thoughts, please let me know. (Yanking the cord out of the wall is always a welcom suggestion! )
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June 18th, 2004, 03:05 AM
I got a VP at job who bring is family PC because he's having problem with it. I boot it and found soooo much spyware I couldn't believe it! The worse, 1 month ago, I clean over 1000 spywares on it! Damm depressing!
June 18th, 2004, 08:58 AM
I hate doing stuff like that for VPs and such. They always expect everything to work like it does in the office but they dont bother to do anything to make sure it does. And then they always bring it in for us to fix on company time. cant they afford to call a tech to fix it for them. do they make that little tat they cannot afford to get someone to come to their place to have a look?
And trying to explain to explain to them wat needs to be done to prevent it from happening again and the protective measures they should take is a waste of time. cos they'll always say its too much work or too complicated for them to understand.
June 18th, 2004, 09:32 PM
June 18th, 2004, 10:07 PM
how can you be so sure?
remember unless there has been a POC (proof of concept) created for a type of malware and submitted to the proper places then virus definitions can only be updated when a virus is discovered - which usually means its in the wild and has already infected peoples machines.....I'm sure the same thing goes for spy/adware - so you can never be 100% sure that your clean unless you have never pluged your pc into the internet.....never installed anything on it (as may include spyware a part of the EULA)...infact a statement like that is only safe to make if you have never taken it out of the box - lol
June 18th, 2004, 10:27 PM
well if his avatar is anything to go by, he's got a mac, so of course he's clean
Mama always said, keep your virus definitions up to date.
June 18th, 2004, 11:19 PM
just because windows is the most used OS and therefore the most targeted do not assume that people do not code malware for other platforms
[just an example]
June 18th, 2004, 11:27 PM
Relyt tell your son not to download anything. Tell him that now your enforcing the rule of no-downloading since it has become a major problem for your system.