BitDefender is currently warning, on its Malware City site, of a fake Stuxnet removal tool which, once downloaded and installed, will wipe out the contents of the victim’s Hard Drive.
As we’ve pointed out here many times in the past – if it’s in the news, you can be sure cyber criminals are exploiting it to their advantage. So we shouldn’t be too surprised, that cyber criminals have been very successful in hijacking searches related to the Stuxnet worm.
Unfortunately, following hijacked links is the common behavior of a large percentage of unaware, undereducated, and less security conscious computer users. Is it any wonder the cyber criminals are winning the game?
At the risk of sounding insensitive it’s fair to say, that users who get victimized by the type of scheme described above, end up that way because they behave like victims.
It’s beyond dispute that download sites are not all equal and as a result, downloading can be extremely risky, especially for unaware users. It’s frustrating to realize that so many users lack this basic knowledge.
Download basics are just that – basic:
Download ONLY from well established sites, or sites that are known to you.
Preferably, download from the developer’s official site.
Regardless of origin, scan all downloads with 2 or more, security applications.
Install a Browser security add-on such as WOT, which investigates web sites for spyware, spam, viruses, browser exploits, phishing, and online scams.
Since “trusted” websites, are not always to be trusted, consider installing an additional layer of security by substituting your ISP provided DNS service, with a more secure alternative such as ClearCloud.
Despite the best precautions, it is still possible to become infected – so, make regular backups of critical data. If you become infected this may be your only solution.
Finally, don’t store critical data on the system partition.
Regular readers will know, that virtually all downloads recommended here, are hosted on CNET’s (download.com), site. There is good reason for this – CNET scrupulously audits hosted downloads, to ensure they are not contaminated by malware.
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