Children’s online games used to distribute malware

Cybercriminals are using children’s relaxed online attitudes to infect their, or their parents’, computers. “If there is something dangerous, a child will find it,” comments Ondrej Vlcek, CTO of Avast Software.

In the last week alone, Avast users have reported more than 12,600 instances of infection after visiting cutearcade.com, a site that houses a collection of online games for young children. The trojan involved redirects viewers to linuxstabs.com, which is a well-known malware distribution center. After cutearcade, the second most visited site in the study is hiddenninjagames. Here an exploit within the collection of flash games sends visitors astrofiber.com.

Vicek believes that the majority of such sites are perfectly legitimate. But the danger, he says, is that these online games require clicking, “and children don’t think much about what they are clicking on.”

Parents should ensure that their children’s computers have adequate up-to-date anti-virus protection, but should also consider using a sandbox. “For additional security, users should consider using virtualization features to set up a ‘sandboxed’ virtual computer,” stated Vlcek. This allows the game to be run in a safe isolated area on the computer in a way that cannot affect or infect the computer itself, and is available in Avast and other anti-virus systems.

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