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Shreyas
Shreyas • Jul 20, 2011

Google Warns Users Of Malware Attack On Their Computer

Google has issued a notification that warns users of an attack from malicious software on their computers. Google’s security engineers discovered the problem while conducting routine maintenance tests on one of their data centers. The attack came to the fore when the security engineers of the company noticed a large amount of unusual search traffic. Google eventually issued the notification when they were convinced that the unusual traffic was a result of the interception of the search traffic of users by intermediate proxy servers. Google has urged the notified users to run a system scan on their computers. The move to use the search engine as a major malware warning system is unusual considering Google’s way of issuing warnings in the past.
[​IMG]Presently, the magnitude of the attacks is not clear. Still, Google have acted swiftly and issued the notification to all probable users they think are infected. According to Google, the users get a warning on the Google home page when it believes that the direct connection between the user and Google has been intercepted. This can be due to the earlier attacks from a malware on the computer or can be new malware altogether.
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 Google is not taking any risks and the user can follow Google’s advisory steps to remove the malware from ones computer. Google has advised the users to install good antivirus software on their computers. Along with this advice, Google also warns of other malicious antivirus software that might be fake and can pose a greater hazard to your computer than the malware itself.
When a computer is infected by this malware, it will try to change the host’s setting and redirect some or all of the traffic via a proxy server. The attacker controls this proxy server and the user’s computer is venerable to further attacks. The proxy server acts as an intermediate between user and the Google. When one tries to search any information using Google search engine, the proxy intercepts that traffic and redirects it to Google as its own. This was how Google detected the attack from the malware.
Google’s move to warn users is drawing mix reviews from the users. Some feel that Google is living up to its reputation by warning users of malware attack. While others say that, this notification does not value much and Google should take more steps to prevent such attacks in first place. Nevertheless, what most of us are forgetting that this notification by Google is nothing but their concern for the users (and themselves!) and their job of notifying people seems the best they can do now. Is Google acting like Chicken Little? No one can tell. However, after Google’s goof up in 2009, when they listed every site on the web as harmful for a short time, the company is not taking any chances, and that is for sure!
Source: Mashable.com | Google Online Security Blog Image: Imageenvision.com

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