Blogger Blogs hosting spyware

Filed as News on February 23, 2005 3:17 pm

by Duncan

Reports emerging that Internet users using Internet Explorer are being infected by Spyware hosted on Google’s Blogger blogging service.

In particular, a number of bloggers have stumbled across these sites after clicking on the “Next Blog” button located at the top right hand corner of Blogspot blogs.

Mallory & Tsibouris Co warns on the MT Law Blog that it “does not endorse the use of the “Next Blog” icon at the upper right hand corner of this blog.” due to the risk of infection and links to a post from Jan 24 where they first experienced the issue.

The infected site loads the Search Miracle/Elite Bar virus, which according to Tenebril, adds a search toolbar to Internet Explorer which redirects searches through www.searchmiracle.com page and creates popup advertisements. In terms of Browser degradation the EliteBar automatically disables the Google toolbar, attempting to trick users into using the EliteBar toolbar instead. EliteBar can cause Internet Explorer to run slowly. In terms of privacy, EliteBar collects information about your web-surfing habits and sends that information back to www.searchmiracle.com. EliteBar admits in its EULA that this information may include personally-identifiable information.

The risk is only to users of Internet Explorer. Firefox users are able to visit the sites without problem.

In the mean time though, until Google is able to assure users that Blogspot sites are not hosting spyware or viruses, we recommend readers do not click on the “Next Blog” button on blogspot sites if they are utilising Internet Explorer.

Extra: those wishing to practice safe internet can download Firefox here.

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