Andrew Brandt

Andrew Brandt researches malware for Webroot Software, and contributes to the Webroot Threat Blog. As a member of the Threat Research team, he and his colleagues help identify malicious software trends and improve the Webroot Antivirus with Antispyware product. Andrew joined the team in 2006. Prior to coming to Webroot, he worked for PC World magazine as a Senior Associate Editor, covering computer security and privacy issues for nearly a decade. In that role, he also wrote the Privacy Watch column. He lives in Boulder, Colorado.

Starcraft 2 Launch Day Piracy Infects Eager Games

While some members of our Threat Research group are attending talks at the Black Hat Briefings, the rest of the team is back at our offices, hard at work watching for novel threats. That’s good news for gamers, and bad news for malware distributors who might try to take advantage of a confluence of events where many elite members of the security community are temporarily turned away from monitors ...

Fake Amazon Order Emails Bring A Trojany ‘Friend’

An ongoing campaign where malware distributors use email spam to deliver dangerous programs to unwitting victims has begun to change its tune, switching the scam to incorporate different brands. In the latest scam, the message appears to be an order confirmation from Amazon.com for the purchase of an expensive consumer electronics item, or a contract (spelled, tellingly, “conract“) for expensive h...

Cloud Defs Limit The Damage Of A False Positive

If you’re a customer or an employee of McAfee, chances are, you’re having a rough week. The company published a false positive, or FP, in its antivirus definitions that went out to customers a few days ago. The FP resulted in some computers going into a loop where the antivirus engine misidentified a key component of the Windows operating system as malicious, Windows replaced the quarantined file,...

Modified Websites Pushing Trojans On The Rise

For the past couple of weeks, owners of Web sites have been hit with a wave of attacks that surreptitiously infect unsuspecting visitors with a wide variety of malware types. The first wave inflicted rogue antivirus on unlucky victims, but late last week victims who visited infectious sites were redirected into a drive-by download site that pushes clickers onto a vulnerable visitor’s computer. The...

Zbot Desperately Seeking AIM Users

The Zbot keylogger campaign-of-the-month targets users of AOL Instant Messenger (AIM) with a message that claims to be an update notification for users of the instant messaging client application. Users unfortunate enough to click through the link in the email message to download what they think is something called “aimupdate_7.1.6.475.exe” will be in for a rude awakening. The malicious page deliv...

‘Spongeface’ Koobface Variant Uses Spongebob As A Tease

A new variant of the Koobface social networking worm is sending social networkers links that lead to fake videos supposedly posted by the beloved cartoon antihero Spongebob Squarepants. The fake videos only display a popup message labeled “Adobe Flash Player Update” that says “This content requires Adobe Flash Player 10.37. Would you like to install it now?” Clicking anywhere on the page downloads...

Phishers Break WoW’s Magic Spell Over Gamers

While I’ve touched on the subject of World of Warcraft phishers (and the Trojans they attempt to spread) a handful of times in the past several months, it’s worth mentioning the ongoing problems phishing posts cause both players and Blizzard, the game’s operator. To recap, the official message board for World of Warcraft is under constant attack by phishers, who use stolen credentials to post mess...

Spammers Pushing Rogues Infiltrate Google Groups

Spammers hawking “fun videos” have been worming their way into Google Groups, the global message board Google built on the skeleton of the old Usenet network. Only, the pages the spammers point victims to, which don’t actually contain videos, come with a nasty surprise: Rogue antivirus apps. The attacks began late last year, but have been increasing in frequency through the holidays, and haven’t a...

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