07 Feb 2011

Social networking viruses branching out

According to an internet security company, social networking virus attacks are spreading like wildfire.

The Trojan.Jnanabot can not only infect Windows operating systems, but Mac and Linux as well. Jnanabot spreads by posting links through social networking accounts and sending attacks through victims’ friends lists. The bot is mostly written Java and in order for the infection to be completed, Java script downloads a platform-specific component.

Although most infections occur on Windows OS, due to the popularity of Apple products, more are running on Mac OS, the report stated. According to the company, 16 percent of the Jnanabot attacks occurred on Mac OS, with 38 percent on Windows XP Professional and 23 percent on Windows XP Home.

Another threat detected is called W32.Yimfoca.B, which does not let Facebook users log into their accounts until they complete a survey. Although the surveys are legitimate, they are a nuisance and the perpetrators are actually paid up to $1 for each completed survey, according to the report.

In a recent survey released by comScore, two-thirds of respondents said they intended to log onto the internet on Super Bowl Sunday, with 32 percent during the game. With social networking sites exploding from the national anthem to the final play, time will only tell how many internet users were hit with computer viruses.