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Reaper978
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Searching "mozilla firefox" in google yields a certain website, the second result from the top, as a matter of fact, leads to something very peculiar, under the guise of "Download Mozilla Firefox - Free Download. Instant Install." I, foolishly thinking this was something like download.com or some other file download site, proceeded to download something that looked, with a cursory glance, like a simple download operation for Firefox. But instead it was just a file for bundling some stupid spyware-looking programs with Firefox, not even the latest version of Firefox. It's a very peculiar download with eye-straining text and asks if I want it to install all this other software. Time to scan the computer with spybot. I actually mistook this to be the official installer for Firefox, such was the inconspicuous nature of the site in question. What is disturbing about this is that it's second from the top of the results list when searching "mozilla firefox".

To hell with spyware. It's especially cute when some program installs itself on your computer and poses as a real "pc-optimizing" and "virus scan" software, when it's in fact a trojan and computer-slower. And they have the nerve to use brute force tactics like preventing you from closing the program, preventing you from uninstalling it, etc. What bullshit. I can't believe there are people who spend their time creating stuff like this to bog your computer down with.

Last edited by Reaper978 on 03-07-13 at 19:37

Old Post 03-07-13 19:27 #
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TheDarkArchon
Senior Member


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You're implying that it's only being made for shits and giggles, which is not the case. Malware makes money for a variety of reasons, non of them are good.

Also, Protip: Do at least one malware scan on everything you download.

Old Post 03-07-13 19:33 #
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yukib1t
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Reaper978 said:
What is disturbing about this is that it's second from the top of the results list when searching "mozilla firefox".
I can't seem to duplicate this. The first three links all go to Mozilla's site, while the fourth goes to Wikipedia.

Old Post 03-07-13 20:25 #
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printz
CRAZY DUMB ZEALOT


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TheDarkArchon said:

Also, Protip: Do at least one malware scan on everything you download.

A more appropriate protip is to follow installation instructions carefully and uncheck ALL options that offer to install bundled junkware. They're there to get you.

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Old Post 03-07-13 20:27 #
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esselfortium
A Major Doomworld Concern


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I'm not seeing anything like what you described from a Google search for "mozilla firefox", either with or without quotes...

Old Post 03-07-13 20:43 #
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printz
CRAZY DUMB ZEALOT


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Understandable. Don't Google searches adjust to user's habits?

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Old Post 03-07-13 21:10 #
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Bloodshedder
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Sounds like you may already have been infected. Malware exists that screws with your Google search results.

Old Post 03-07-13 21:39 #
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Maes
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I always thought that the only shit that was up was Mozilla Firefox itself.

Old Post 03-07-13 21:59 #
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GreyGhost
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yukib1t said:
I can't seem to duplicate this. The first three links all go to Mozilla's site, while the fourth goes to Wikipedia.
Same here. I agree with Bloodshedder, Reaper987's PC is probably already infected and the resident malware wanted to invite some friends over for a party.

Old Post 03-08-13 00:31 #
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Ribbiks
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Bloodshedder said:
Malware exists that screws with your Google search results.


or maybe google noticed he has a habit of downloading malware

Old Post 03-08-13 00:40 #
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Technician
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Ribbiks said:
or maybe google noticed he has a habit of downloading malware
LOL.

Old Post 03-08-13 01:04 #
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Orangestar
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Google search results are based regionally. Perhaps he lives somewhere close to where a lot of people fell for the scam?

Old Post 03-08-13 05:25 #
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Maes
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No matter what Google results are based off, can't you get a "standard" or "unadorned" search by a) Logging off your Google Account (if you have one) and b) Clearing all the cookies? That way, only country-wide default customizations/settings should apply (like language, and nation-wide ads).

I don't know how good Google is at determining user location by using only pure IP address cues, but there's no reason to believe they're any better than what is possible with standard traceroute methods or by using existent IP region-lookup databases, which can be off even at the country level. No idea what Google considers a "region" either. A country? A state? A municipal region? A county? An oblast? A city? A town?

Old Post 03-08-13 09:43 #
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GreyGhost
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Maes said:
No matter what Google results are based off, can't you get a "standard" or "unadorned" search by a) Logging off your Google Account (if you have one) and b) Clearing all the cookies? That way, only country-wide default customizations/settings should apply (like language, and nation-wide ads).
I'd go a couple of steps further, use an anonymous proxy and conduct an exorcism to expel Google's malign spirit from your computer.

Old Post 03-08-13 09:57 #
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Maes
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GreyGhost said:
I'd go a couple of steps further, use an anonymous proxy and conduct an exorcism to expel Google's malign spirit from your computer.


Well, if using Google Chrome, surely. Certainly you can't expect to beat Google using their own browser now, can you?

Old Post 03-08-13 10:35 #
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Gez
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Maybe it's when you search for Firefox in Google Chrome that you get redirected to malware. That actually wouldn't surprise me.

Old Post 03-08-13 11:26 #
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Reaper978
We find his lack of rocket launcher faith disturbing


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It seems that I was mistaken. The bad website I was talking about appears second in the "ads related to mozilla firefox" box, which is a very slightly differently colored box directly above the search results. I didn't see the title of the box, so I thought my search results began at the beginning of the page (in the box). Instead of the real search results at the beginning, it was the ad box. Still, that's no reason to have a bad software installer in the ad box portion of the search results either.

Old Post 03-08-13 19:21 #
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Maes
I like big butts!


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The mechanisms use by those ads are every bit as bad as the malware behind them -I wonder how long before Google and other search engines become like those shithole domain squatter or download sites that have 10 fake & misleading "CLICK HERE" or "DOWNLOAD" malware/adware/spyware links surrounding the real one.

Old Post 03-08-13 19:40 #
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buttspit
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Man, I remember when I fell for one of those "DOWNLOAD" buttons the first time at an upload site. It didn't help that I was supposed to click on the filename that was in the small phrase "You are now downloading *whateverfile*", while the big green download button was below it.

Old Post 03-08-13 20:09 #
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Gez
Why don't I have a custom title by now?!


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Maes said:
The mechanisms use by those ads are every bit as bad as the malware behind them -I wonder how long before Google and other search engines become like those shithole domain squatter or download sites that have 10 fake & misleading "CLICK HERE" or "DOWNLOAD" malware/adware/spyware links surrounding the real one.


Google doesn't need to trick the user into downloading crap. It can automatically download crap through Chrome and Android, as well as embed it inside documents created or placed in Google Docs, or added to attachments in GMail.

Old Post 03-08-13 21:38 #
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Sokoro
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Maes said:
... An oblast? ...


That is a czech word. Where did you get that? Give it back!

Old Post 03-09-13 20:32 #
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myk
volveré y seré millones


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Sokoro said:
Where did you get that?
Probably from Russia.

Old Post 03-09-13 20:46 #
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Nomad
Not dumb enough to get a custom title


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Bloodshedder said:
Sounds like you may already have been infected. Malware exists that screws with your Google search results.


This.

Old Post 03-09-13 21:26 #
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printz
CRAZY DUMB ZEALOT


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buttspit said:
Man, I remember when I fell for one of those "DOWNLOAD" buttons the first time at an upload site. It didn't help that I was supposed to click on the filename that was in the small phrase "You are now downloading *whateverfile*", while the big green download button was below it.
Always make sure you have a way to see where you're going if you hover the mouse over the link, and look so that it leads you to the right place.

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Old Post 03-09-13 21:42 #
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Nomad
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Kind of related, it does piss me off that Google filters the links when searching. I can't count the number of times I've wanted to link someone to something from a quick Google search and they get this huge obnoxious string of characters instead of the actual URL.

Old Post 03-09-13 22:25 #
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Maes
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Nomad said:
Kind of related, it does piss me off that Google filters the links when searching. I can't count the number of times I've wanted to link someone to something from a quick Google search and they get this huge obnoxious string of characters instead of the actual URL.


I'm surprised that nobody created a "degooglify" script/browser extension that cleans up google searches when copying links...

Edit: well, there actually is such a script, but unless you have a python interpreter handy at all times, it won't do much good.

Edit 2: OK, there is also Google Link Cleanup.

Still, when you need scripts and extensions to get back obvious functionality, there's obviously something wrong with the whole shebang.

Old Post 03-09-13 22:55 #
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The Doomist
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On my old laptop it has an adware virus, and Jesus Christ, adware sucks.

The worst are those ads on Youtube and such which shows two look-a-likes and says something like "X Doctors HATE HER!". Those are so dumb. I also remember those early to mid 2000 "YOU ARE THE 1,000,000th VISITOR!". Good times...

Old Post 03-13-13 09:37 #
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Maes
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And don't forget CLICK HERE to download FREE GAMES!!!

Seriously, I never got the point behind such malware. Most often than not, they ended up infecting off-line computers (especially USB-autorun variants) or computers in places where it was highly unlikely that a monetary transaction with real data would take place (e.g. Internet Cafes, university labs) and so the "they are trying to gather credit card info" explanation didn't make much sense to sense.

I also never understood how forcibly showing e.g. some regional Milwaukee ads on some poor devil's old battered PC in Kazakhstan would benefit the business in any way, as there would be no real possibility of genuine interest or of an actual financial transation.

Let alone that since the ad would be perceived as spurious/intrusive/unexpected/malicious, how could that be considered good for whatever was advertized? Then again, as someone who has never e-shopped in the traditional sense, perhaps I'm missing something here. Maybe these ads have a very specific target group (gullible people with an easy access to a credit card and very few hesitations about using it?) and I simply don't cut the mustard?

Bottom line: such ads just ended up being plain annoying or disruptive.

Then again, computer viruses of the olden days were by definition off-line, isolated constructs, and their purpose was to propagate and at some point become destructive. Today, it seems, wiping your disk's MFT clean with a scorning message is not "in". Everything works quietly, online, subtly, and only manifests itself as an ad or browser hijackings.

Last edited by Maes on 03-13-13 at 10:44

Old Post 03-13-13 10:33 #
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Phml
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Likewise, what's with the spam messages on various blogs and forums? You know the kind: "I could not Believe Bob's comment, but It was true! my Aunt's Mother-in-Law made $9376 Last Month working from her Home. check This out http://bit.ly/scamscamscam".

You'd believe the ten minutes or so it'd take to rewrite the generic comment template in proper english would make it much more likely to trick people.

Old Post 03-13-13 12:31 #
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Maes
I like big butts!


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Phml said:
You'd believe the ten minutes or so it'd take to rewrite the generic comment template in proper english would make it much more likely to trick people.


Scammin' ain't easy, dude. Apparently every wannabe scammer starts from scratch with no outside help and "know how", and both technical and social engineering approaches seem to go cyclically, rather than perpetually evolve at the same level for everyone involved in the "business". That's why you see primitive, clearly 90s approaches (obviously malicious .exe downloads, plaintext form submissions, nigerian scams, annoying javascript popups etc.) coexist with sophisticated XSS attacks, drive-by downloads, botnets etc.

I guess it's for the same reason why e.g. not every petty criminal becomes a big fish, or at least a more sophisticated/effective kind of criminal: everybody wants a piece of the pie (the pool of potential victims) but not everybody can get to play in the big leagues either due to lack of ability, sophistication, know-how, connections etc. However on the Internet it's simply easier to avoid violent confrontation with competitors for "turf" or even attracting undue police attention, unlike RL crime, so there are more wannabes at all times.

I particularly like the bit about meta-scamming:





I guess the next step now would be introducing meta-scamming: scamming aimed at scamming other scammers (or wannabes).

E.g. remember those dot-com bubble era "Start your online business! Work from home! Be a web enterpreneur/milionaire!" scams?There must be something equivalent for gullible scammer wannabes: "Did you know that you can get RICH ON THE WEB by sending poorly phrased, incoherent, vague ramblings and getting THOUSANDS of potential marks customers to trust you with your personal data? Be second to none, join our ONLINE TRAINING COURSE FOR A MODEST FEE and learn the secrets of REAL WEB BUSINESS!".

....otherwise how would you explain that many scammers behave literally as if they started from zero and under someone else's (not entirely effective nor aimed at their best interests) directions? The very least it boosts bulk e-mail sales, and would surely allow selling canned scam instructions as a form of "franchise" to those desperate enough to blindly follow "instructions to success" which apparently involve sending poorly written text. Well, they should at least teach them to edit away the template. Did I win a lottery? Receive an inheritance or get a bank loan approved? Try scamming me with ONE thing at a time, not all three together!

Old Post 03-13-13 13:29 #
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