Webroot Retired ThreatBlog Member - Andrew Brandt

Andrew Brandt

Role: Retired ThreatBlog Member
Threat Blog Posts: 149



Posts by Andrew Brandt:

With IM Buddies Like These, Who Needs Frienemies?

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The other morning, I walked into the office to find a slew of instant messaging buddy requests from total strangers. This isn’t unexpected: I frequently get buddy requests on IM accounts I maintain for research purposes that contain malicious URLs and other useful research data. But this was one request I wasn’t expecting. The inquiry, written in both English and Russian, was simply an advertisement for “Organization of DDOS attacks” from an ICQ account that has not been used since the friend request came in. The somewhat perplexing offer claims the service offers “support online 24/7/365″ (finally, a DDOS service […]

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Five Summer Travel Security Tips

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Ah, summer. Beaches, drinks with little umbrellas, 4th of July fireworks, baseball games, reading long cheesy novels in a lounge chair, teleconferencing with colleagues from your hotel room in Aruba. Wait, what? Yes, it’s true. It takes serious discipline to travel without schlepping along a laptop, smartphone, digital camera, MP3 player, portable hard drive, SD cards, and a host of support equipment. Well, it does for me, anyway. Along with those devices come pitfalls, from loss to data theft. So, in the spirit of safe summer travel, in advance of the big 4th of July travel weekend, what follows are […]

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Fake UPS Document Installs Fake Microsoft Patch Payload

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As if we didn’t have enough to deal with this week — after a Microsoft patch Tuesday that brought with it a boatload of security updates for Windows, Office, Silverlight, Visual Studio, and other programs — some enterprising malware distributor is emailing around bogus tracking number malware dressed up in the icon of a PDF document, and that malware is downloading payloads named after the updaters that Windows Update retrieves during an update. The malware arrived into one of our spam collection points with an attachment named UPS_document.zip. Way to be original there, criminals. Inside the Zip file was an […]

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MacProtector: Rogue of the Week

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This week, we turn our attention temporarily away from the never-ending stream of rogue security products on the Windows platform and take a closer look at the Mac OS analogue, MacProtector (aka Mac Security, Mac Defender, MacGuard, and–if history serves–soon to be many, many other names). There’s been a lot of press coverage of these rogues — including a video blog post by us — in the past few weeks, so we thought it was high time we took a deeper dive. Even though Webroot doesn’t offer an automated removal solution for the Mac, there’s good news for most Mac users — […]

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Rogue of the Week: Windows Recovery

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Word from the AMR group last week was that there weren’t many changes from the previous week; Many of the same rogue antivirus previously reported in this blog continue to plague the Internet. This week I decided to focus on a rogue that’s recently become a problem. It goes by the name Windows Recovery, though it’s also been called Ultra Defragger or HDD Rescue by other AV vendors. Bottom line, it’s still a fraudulent program which relies on deception and trickery to convince a victim to fork over some cash for a “fix.” It’s just not a rogue antivirus; Call […]

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Rogues of the Week: XP Total Security & MS Removal Tool

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It’s been said that sunlight sanitizes almost everything it shines on. Beginning this week, and every week from now on, we’ll focus a concentrated beam on the rogue antivirus programs our support staff and Threat Research team have been working to remediate. Rogues have a tendency to switch up their names, user interface, and other outward characteristics, while retaining most of the same internal functionality — and by functionality I mean the fraudulent tricks these forms of malware use to make it difficult for someone to identify them as malicious or remove them from an infected computer. It’s not as […]

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Korean Rogues’ Slapfight Bonanza

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The other day, Threat Reseacher Dan Para sent along the video clip below, which gave us all a good laugh. Dan had been researching a Korean-language Trojan downloader, but when he ran the file, he didn’t expect the downloader to retrieve not one…not two…but three separate rogue antivirus products. The most amusing thing about the video is that these three rogues — named Smartscan, Antiguard, and Bootcare — decided to duke it out amongst themselves to be front-and-center on the desktop. But each time one of the apps would bring itself to the front, both of the others would respond […]

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Webroot Answers Your Security Questions

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I’m very pleased to present today the first in a series of videos we’ve produced. The videos have the lofty goal of addressing the most pressing questions relating to malware, cybercrime, and online fraud. We’ll take you behind the scenes at Webroot and introduce you to some of our Threat Research team in the process. In this first video, Webroot’s Director of Threat Research, Jeff Horne, answers a question submitted to us via Twitter direct message about the motives behind most cybercrime, and whether there are any examples of malware or other types of malicious online activity that have been […]

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