Follow Us

We use cookies to provide you with a better experience. If you continue to use this site, we'll assume you're happy with this. Alternatively, click here to find out how to manage these cookies

hide cookie message

Fake Firefox update spreads unwanted app

Installs successor to notorious to Zango Toobar.

Article comments

The successor program to the notorious Zango spyware Toolbar is being used to target users of Mozilla's Firefox with fake browser updates, a security company has alleged.

According to a warning put out by eSoft, the reprised Hotbar app, run as of May last year by a new entity called Pinball Corp, is being fed to users via a fake but convincing Firefox update page. The update page - which users would come to through a search engine for the latest updates - looks identical to the genuine page in everything bar the version it is claiming to offer (3.5 where the most recent is 3.6) and some misspelling.

Windows users fooled into downloading and installing from the fake page will actually be getting a toolbar app that also hits the user with pop-up ads and a weather application in the system tray.

According to eSoft, the software is actually being fed without the direct knowledge of its creators, Pinball, which will likely be paying a third party affiliate for every install. As with the distribution of the original Zango Toolbar, how that install gets on to a user's PC is not their business.

Zango disappeared last April after several years in which it was accused of sneaking spyware on to users' PC without their consent, invariably by paying third parties to do the dirty work. In 2006, it was fined $3 million by the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) for its actions.

It should be pointed out that what is at fault here is not the new toolbar app per se, but the way it is being distributed by a separate entity and installed under false pretences. As ever, an application becomes legitimate if the user consents to its installation having had the proposition explained in an accurate way, but that is certainly not happening in this instance.

The genuine install site for Firefox updates can be found here.



Share:

More from Techworld

More relevant IT news

Comments



Send to a friend

Email this article to a friend or colleague:

PLEASE NOTE: Your name is used only to let the recipient know who sent the story, and in case of transmission error. Both your name and the recipient's name and address will not be used for any other purpose.

Techworld White Papers

Choose – and Choose Wisely – the Right MSP for Your SMB

End users need a technology partner that provides transparency, enables productivity, delivers...

Download Whitepaper

10 Effective Habits of Indispensable IT Departments

It’s no secret that responsibilities are growing while budgets continue to shrink. Download this...

Download Whitepaper

Gartner Magic Quadrant for Enterprise Information Archiving

Enterprise information archiving is contributing to organisational needs for e-discovery and...

Download Whitepaper

Advancing the state of virtualised backups

Dell Software’s vRanger is a veteran of the virtualisation specific backup market. It was the...

Download Whitepaper

Techworld UK - Technology - Business

Innovation, productivity, agility and profit

Watch this on demand webinar which explores IT innovation, managed print services and business agility.

Techworld Mobile Site

Access Techworld's content on the move

Get the latest news, product reviews and downloads on your mobile device with Techworld's mobile site.

Find out more...

From Wow to How : Making mobile and cloud work for you

On demand Biztech Briefing - Learn how to effectively deliver mobile work styles and cloud services together.

Watch now...

Site Map

* *