The world’s “big 3″ search engines have come under a planned ambush from a large scale campaign to guide online searchers towards dangerous Malware websites. Understandably, Google, Yahoo and Microsoft are not too pleased with this ambush and are doing everything in their power to dissolve the situation. Just last week, Google removed more than 40,000 malware hosting sites from their index.
You may be wondering how is it that these websites get into the top of the SERP’s. It is believed that they boosted their rankings through dubious tactics such as comment and blog spam, using bots to pop links into any web form requesting a URL. There has been no evidence to suggest that they’ve bought search terms in order to rank higher, or that they’ve compromised legitimate sites.
In order to help understand the effects of this attack, included in this article is an outline of what Malware is, the devastating results, and prevention tactics.
What is Malware?
For those of you that may be unaware of what Malware is exactly, according to webopedia.com, it is software designed specifically to damage or disrupt a system. It can come in the form of viruses, worms, spyware, trojan horses and browser hijackers, just to name a few.
What is the result of this dreadful Malware?
Once your computer is infected with this program, it can most commonly disable hardware, deny legitimate user access, corrupt files, alter or delete data, distribute confidential data, and even cause a hard drive to crash.
How to spot these websites in your search results?
To prevent you from falling victim to these dreadful infections, while combing through any search results watch out for domain names with a jumble of characters and “.cn” at the end.
There is no doubt that attacks such as this will continue, if not increase in frequency, therefore the most effective thing you can do is to always ensure that you have the latest security and virus protection for your computer.
If anything, it is hoped this article serves as a timely reminder to update your protection as soon as possible and always ensure that it is up to date.