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Game Over for "GameOver Zeus", But Be Alert for Successor Attacks

2014-06-09

This week, the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the US Department of Justice (DOJ) announced that, through great international effort,the long-lived, extremely harmful GameOver Zeus botnet has been destroyed.According to reports, the botnet incorporated an enormous number of infected computers (500,000 to 1,000,000). GameOver Zeus' main purpose was to steal users' online banking information (such as the username, password, and even secondary authentication information). The DOJ stated that GameOver Zeus had,in the US alone, stolen more than $100 million, and estimated a global loss of up to $1 billion.

 

GameOver Zeus generally propagates itself via spam emails, such as email attachments or links to official-looking websites. Baidu Antivirus security experts described that, in order to confuse users, malicious programs would disguise themselves using PDF, Flash and other popular software icons. When such programs were opened by inattentive users, the computer could be controlled by cyber criminals, leading to serious security risks for online bank accounts.  The experts also noted that, according to the information released by the FBI, GameOver Zeus were closely linked to last year's notorious Cryptolocker ransomware (Cryptolocker was directly installed into users' computers by GameOver Zeus). A botnet could propagate any malicious programs at any time, allowing it to destroy the important data stored on infected computers, leading to devastating losses.

 

Baidu Antivirus security experts are warning users that, because botnet code has been widely disseminated throughout the internet for an extended period of time, there are now numerous botnet variants. In order to stop internet criminals from taking control of your computer, please be sure to enable all of your security software's protection features. Currently, Baidu Antivirus users can intercept these attacks by enabling full protection. It is recommended that other users download the latest version of Baidu Antivirus and enable the full protection feature to avoid financial losses.


At the same time, users can follow the steps below to improve their computer's internet security capabilities.

 

1.  Keep your security software up to date.

2.  Use the latest operating system.

Many viruses and Trojans make use of operating system flaws to raise the probability of a successful infection. Using an older operating system, especially Windows XP (which has recently stopped being maintained),will cause users to suffer more attacks. 

3.  Get in the habit of regularly backing up computer data.

Malware similar to Cryptolocker is constantly emerging, and in order to avoid losing data, users need to get in the habit of making regular backups. We recommend backing up the most important data in several different environments (such as on a cloud drive or a specialized mobile device).

4.  Regularly check your online banking information and closely watch for any abnormalities.


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