search engine optimization

Beware of SOPA Scams

Tomorrow, on January 18, 2012, dozens of popular websites covering a diverse range of subjects will be blacking out their home pages in protest of the U.S. Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA).  Some of these websites are well-known, such as the English language web site for the encyclopedic Wikipedia and quirky news site Boing Boing,

A dozen predictions for 2012

While I share the reluctance of my colleagues to predict the future, I think there are some trends that can be classified as “reasonably likely to occur” in 2012. I make no promises, but here’s what I think we will see, in no particular order of importance or certainty. We will see increased interest in

Gaddafi search poisoning

Here’s an example of search poisoning somewhat similar to that predicted by Stephen Cobb. It uses the death of Gaddafi as a hook, as noted by our colleague Raphael Labaca Castro.

A little light relief

Recently I've been collecting examples of comment spam. Essentially, this is for a research project that is somewhere fairly low on my to-do list. However, it does have a more positive aspect: whenever I feel at a loss for words and losing faith in my own wordsmithing ability, I scroll down to see what nice

Global malware thrives on the demise of a global terrorist

[NOTE:  As we were publishing this articl, our Latin American office discovered another Black Hat SEO campaign incorporating promises of Osama bin Laden videos on Facebook.  Click here to view their article in Spanish. We will follow up on this shortly.  AG] The malware phenomenon started by the announcement of Osama Bin Laden’s death continues

SEO poisoning, Londoning and Icelanding

I was asked whether I'd seen SEO (Search Engine Optimization) poisoning relating to the Icelandic eruption and the very widespread grounding of aircraft in Europe. Well, there were certainly attempts in March to exploit the earlier Eyjafjallajokull eruption in order to drive googlers interested in finding out more towards malicious web sites. So it would be naive

No Stone Left Unturned

We have discussed SEO poisoning extensively in the ESET Threat Blog, and it should come as no surprise to our readers that any topic which trends up quickly in search engine traffic will be exploited by the criminals who specialize in such activities.  The poisoned search term du jour is "erin andrews death threat".  Apparently,

Russian Metro Bombings: Here come the Ghouls

[Interim updates removed: later information on Twitter profile attacks and Blackhat SEO attacks using keywords related to this topic to spread malware, has been made public in a later blog at http://www.eset.com/blog/2010/03/30/here-come-more-of-the-ghouls.] Following this morning's bombings in the Moscow Metro (subway system), Aryeh Goretsky suggests the likelihood of criminals using "blackhat SEO" (search engine optimization

(Fake) Videos of Berlusconi attack

It is public knowledge that the Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi was hit in the face which left him with facial injuries, a broken nose and several broken teeth. The video of the attack is circulating on the Internet but at this time, if you search for them on any search engine it is possible

Web Searches and Dangerous Ladies

I feel like the learned judge in the ’60s who asked, in the course of a trial, "What is a Beatle?" since until recently I couldn’t have given you an accurate answer to the question "What is a Jessica Biel?" In fact, I’d probably have said something like ""Wasn’t she in Flashdance?" (The answer is

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