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Over 5K Sites Compromised On Google’s Image Search

If you are using Google’s image search, for any reason, you may want to stop, immediately. Security experts have found thousands of sites compromised by code injection (malicious code that redirects users to fake antivirus applications). In fact, I’ve also been a victim of the Google image malware in the past and had to get a brand new hard drive because a reformatting did not work. What was I searching for? Simple tech stuff like laptops and cellphones. You’d be surprised how many types of images are compromised, but you can bet the most popular searches are the worst.

Many of the targeted sites are WordPress sites. At least 5,000 websites have been compromised and Google serves at least 15 million hits to these pages. 90% of the compromised image searches result from malicious websites displayed on the first page, so if you REALLY need to use Google image search, start with page two or three, always.

Google claims that it is aware of the problem and working towards a fix. In the meanwhile, if you do get attacked, don’t attempt to “click your way through it”, instead close the browser from the taskbar or use “control + alt + delete” and kill whatever browser you are using. Often times the malicious popup will ask “Are you sure you want to close? Scanning for viruses…”, so make sure you just kill the browser without answering the “popup.” Until then, use known websites to search for images.

Photo Courtesy of LaughingSquid
Photo Courtesy of DannyS