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Banner advert attacks can be thwarted with behavioural analysis.

Tier-3 : 05 February, 2008  (Technical Article)
Banner Trojan discovered by Symantec directs victims to malware download sites but can be overcome with the installation of behavioural analysis software.
Tier-3 says that a new Trojan, spotted in various forms by Symantec in recent weeks, now poses a potentially serious threat to most authentication systems being rolled out by banks to protect their electronic customers.

Tier-3, the behavioural analysis IT security software specialist, says that a series of banner ad attacks on and Rhapsody, the Real Networks-owned online music site, can be beaten by using behavioural analysis technology.

'The attacks, which centre on the use of malware infections planted in banner ads that route users to sites apparently containing anti- spyware software, end up with users downloading the malware they are trying to avoid,' said Geoff Sweeney, Tier-3's CTO.

'This new attach vector, which was identified last week by Sandi Hardmeir Australian spyware researcher, attempted to persuade users to download the TROJ_GIDA.A Trojan,' he added.

According to Sweeney, this new banner ad infection technique builds on the earlier rogue URL strategy found on some DoubleClick ads last year and is yet another example of how most antivirus and anti spyware technology is powerless to protect against attacks that the security software vendors don't know about. Whilst consumers and business alike continue to rely on reactive rule based technologies to defend against these sorts of attacks there will always be a time window where they risk becoming infected whilst they wait for the latest definition file to become available.

'In that episode, adverts for the National Hockey League and the Economist magazine were used to launch the malware. Clearly this new trend is malware attack vectors is evolving rapidly and companies need to be aware of the need to review their security strategies and install behavioural analysis software where appropriate,' he said.

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