Facebook Malware Spreading Disguised as Porn

Personal Finance
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If you need another reason not to click on porn on Facebook — and we sincerely hope you don’t — how about this? Malware disguised as a naughty video appears to be running rampant on the social network.

And if you click it, a bunch of your friends might know.

A type of malware known as a Trojan, or Trojan horse, infected more than 110,000 people in just two days, Web security experts said Friday.

This one spreads by posing as a link from an already-infected user. It sends the link to 20 people from that user’s friends list.

When opened, the link leads to what appears to be a YouTube video that starts to play, then stops, asking the user to install a Flash player update. That phony update contains the malware, which security researcher Mohammad Faghani writes can take over a computer’s keystroke and mouse controls.

This particular piece of malware appears designed to embarrass users, rather than steal or otherwise tamper with their data. But as Web users handle more and more of their business online, from mobile banking to storing vital personal data, the risk of financial harm due to Internet tinkering is real.

Avoiding questionable links, like the Facebook example above, helps lower your risk, as does making sure your anti-virus software is installed and up to date.

Financial institutions are working to make things safer too, with improvements to credit card security and tools like security tokens.