Hackers Deliver Malware To Searchers Of SeaWorld Death Video
Those searching are looking for videos of the killer whale Tillikum, who killed veteran SeaWorld trainer Dawn Brancheau at SeaWorld Orlando’s Shamu Stadium on Wednesday. They are searching for actual footage of the killing, as morbid as it might seem.
However, those searching for terms like "sea world trainer killed home video" are often being delivered harmful results. Fortunately, much of the time, hitting one of the those links will lead you to a warning page (as shown above). If the infected site is very new however, it’s still possible you will be able to reach the malware-laden site.
The hackers are using the tried-and-true rogue antivirus method. You may have seen this previously; you surf to a site, a Window pops up saying your computer either "is" or "may be" infected. If you accept their offer, you will install software on your system that is essentially malware itself. Here’s what Sophos said:
The heartless hackers are taking advantage of the hot news story by popping up fake anti-virus (also known as scareware or rogue anti-virus) alerts. The alerts are designed to frighten unsuspecting users into believing there is a security problem with their computer, which could lead them into downloading dangerous software or handing over their credit card details.
The tactic being used by cybercriminals is the same as the one we saw after the death of Natasha Richardson and Patrick Swayze, and when they exploited interest amongst the public in the anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attack last year.
You could argue that anyone hunting for footage of this horrific accident deserves everything that’s coming to them, but the real sick ones here are the hackers who are trying to profit from the death of an innocent woman in a tragic accident.
These sites are not all that uncommon. The common sense rule is if you get a pop-up that says "your PC might be infected" and asks to run a scan … don’t do it! Close the tab, or use the back arrow to back out of the site. You should be OK as long as you do not accept the offer to scan your system.
Although Jim Atchinson, president of SeaWorld Parks and Entertainment confirmed that SeaWorld had actual video of the attack, the only video released close to that event is the below, a home video taken just before the attack.