A Quarter Million Systems Infected By Dangerous Chinese ‘Fireball’ Malware
The world seems to be facing a never-ending war since the year start. Just after the gigantic Ransomware attack, there is yet another odious malware attack sweeping the globe. The new menace Chinese browser hijacking malware called Fireball has said to hit the world by a sweeping number making millions of computers susceptible to hacking.
Security firm Check Point has warned of a worldwide gigantic attack with almost 250 million computers affected worldwide and 20 percent of all the global corporate networks. Surprisingly, amongst the countries adversely affected, India tops the list. With proportions being highest in India, Mexico and Brazil, Fireball also have 5.5 million instances in US.
Chinese digital marketing corporation Rafotech is said to be behind the attack. It has cleverly played its game and have easily succeeded in manipulating user’s browsers to get false clicks and promotion for its clients online.
How Does Fireball Enter Users Computer?
Per Check Point Fireball is mainly getting inside computer via bundling. It infects a user’s PC by installing itself on the victim’s PC along with some other program that the user downloads, but without user’s permission.
How does Fireball affect the victim’s PC?
The newly discovered threat is customized to hijack browsers and turning them into zombies. Capable of downloading additional malwares on the victim’s PC, Fireball can also execute codes on the infected machines. Considering such tasks being performed by Fireball, it can easily perform a wide range of actions from stealing credentials to loading ransomware.
Currently, Fireball is seen emphasizing on adware. It deploys the vulnerabilities in browsers by turning their default search engines and home pages into false search engines to generate false ads and generate revenue.
Installation of plug-ins and added configurations to lift its advertisement activity is also seen done by Fireball.
In addition to the serious threats posed by Fireball, it is also capable of spying victim’s PC by tracking pixels to collect users information.
Having said that it is most important that you keep your PC information protected from this malware. Keeping the following points in mind one can protect their PC from such attacks:
Always have an updated anti-malware/virus program.
Plug-ins should not be installed from unauthorized publishers.
Keep your PC updated with the latest firmware.
Precautions should be taken while opening emails.
The only good news about Fireball is that it can be removed from PC’s by uninstalling the adware using the Programs and Features list in Control Panel. In Mac it can be removed by using the Mac Finder function present in the Applications folder in Mac.