Microsoft to the Rescue – Can MS Thwart Malicious Online Ads?

microsoft-logoMicrosoft is going to court trying to fight the malvertisers. Microsoft said it filed five lawsuits Thursday against parties it suspects of posting online advertisements laden with malicious code. We are talking about wide-spread online ads that scare you into installing their software.

Everybody has seen them. Some have fell for the trick. Most commonly, you see a pop-up advising you that your computer is infected and you need to install their anti-virus software. Well, if you do, you are not installing an anti-virus but a virus. It is a scare tactic used by the malvertisers for a long time now.

Microsoft has tried to work with the ad networks to put a stop to all this with little success.

Now, it has gone to court against no-name defendants.

“Although we don’t yet know the names of the specific individuals behind these acts, we are filing these cases to help uncover the people responsible and prevent them from continuing their exploits,” Cranton said.

Kudos to Microsoft for trying, but I don’t know how successful they will be.

An important thing to keep in mind when confronted with such websites is to never make a haste decision. Don’t be scared into installing a software from an unknown company. Also, know how to distinguish advertisements from your operating system’s own warning messages. If you have an anti-virus software installed and updated, it will prevent you from installing malicious software from websites. You should also familiarize yourself with what the warning message from your anti-virus looks like so you know the warning message is indeed from your anti-virus.

For more tips on staying safe on the internet, see this article.

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