Malware arrives - proof that Twitter is nearing mainstream?

Summary:Micro-blogging service Twitter may not yet reached a tipping point among my own non-techie circle of friends - unlike Facebook which is everywhere - but that hasn't stopped the cyber criminals moving in.

Micro-blogging service Twitter may not yet reached a tipping point among my own non-techie circle of friends - unlike Facebook which is everywhere - but that hasn't stopped the cyber criminals moving in.

"Malware hunters at Kaspersky Lab are seeing early signs that Twitter is now clearly big enough to be a distribution mechanism for malicious software", writes my ZDNet colleague Ryan Naraine.

In one case spotted this week, a malicious Twitter profile had been created to lure visitors to a fake link to a pornographic video of Brazilian pop star Kelly Key. However, if you click on the link, reports Kaspersky Lab, you're greeted with a progress bar which looks as if it's downloading a new version of Adobe Flash which you'll need to watch the video. The fake Adobe Flash file is of course a Trojan virus (or viruses) which you then unintentionally install on your PC in a classic case of social engineering.

While attracting the attention of criminals won't be particularly welcome by Twitter, especially since fighting cyber crime is the last distraction they need as they attempt to scale, it does show how mind share is rapidly growing.

Notably, BBC news online ran the story too.

All publicity's good publicity, right?

Topics: Malware, Security, Social Enterprise

About

Steve O'Hear is a London-based consultant, educator, and journalist, focussing on the Internet and all aspects of digital technology. He advises businesses and not-for-profit organisations on how to exploit the collaborative and publishing opportunities offered by the Web, and has written for numerous publications including The Guardian a... Full Bio

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