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Twitter Virus

It appears that Twitter is now a target:

The micro-blogging service run by Twitter was hit with a series of computer virus attacks that placed unwanted messages on users’ sites over the weekend.

The so-called Mikeyy worm spreads when Twitter users click onto an affected page from a message — or “tweet” — posted by an infected user. They then begin automatically posting tweets to other users that promote the site StalkDaily.com.

The first attack was reported early Saturday morning, followed by two more over the weekend and a fourth on Monday.

This isn’t surprising, really. Any platform that gains popularity is going to invite people to write malicious code.  People thought switching to Firefox from IE made them safe but that changed once Firefox gained enough users to make targetting them worthwhile.

One of my home PCs got hit with some sort of worm or trojan yesterday afternoon, although it doesn’t appear to have been this particular one.  I did read and send some messages directly from Twitter.com but it may merely be coincidental.

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About James Joyner
James Joyner is the publisher of Outside the Beltway, an associate professor of security studies at the Marine Corps Command and Staff College, and a nonresident senior fellow at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. He has a PhD in political science from The University of Alabama. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter.

Comments

  1. Floyd says:

    What is the motivation to write viruses that simply destroy other peoples property without any gain for the malicious perpetrators who still have to reside in mom’s basement, drooling in the dark?
    Do they get paid by Norton, Yahoo,and other sellers of virus protection?
    If they had any real talent it would be directed toward something constructive or profitable , wouldn’t it?

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  2. legion says:

    Well, that which is popular draws more attacks… I just saw an article on Slashdot about a study claiming Windows Vista SP2 is the ‘most secure OS on the planet’… I haven’t waded through the density of the original article yet, but I suspect it’s because nobody freaking uses Vista if they have any option whatsoever. Not a real attractive target for virus writers, that…

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  3. [...] Twitter Virus (outsidethebeltway.com) [...]

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  4. Michael says:

    People thought switching to Firefox from IE made them safe but that changed once Firefox gained enough users to make targetting them worthwhile.

    In the number of severe unpatched vulnerabilities, you’re still much safer with Firefox than IE, though IE has gotten significantly better.

    One of my home PCs got hit with some sort of worm or trojan yesterday afternoon, although it doesn’t appear to have been this particular one.

    From what I’ve gathered, this isn’t really a virus in the traditional sense, and it doesn’t infect the users of Twitter. Rather, sends tweets containing a link to a webpage containing javascript that, when executed by your browser, posts tweets from your browser back to twitter that contain the same page link.

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  5. Michael says:

    What is the motivation to write viruses that simply destroy other peoples property without any gain for the malicious perpetrators who still have to reside in mom’s basement, drooling in the dark?

    The same reason they ride down stair rails on skate boards.

    I haven’t waded through the density of the original article yet, but I suspect it’s because nobody freaking uses Vista if they have any option whatsoever.

    It seemed to be more an off-the-cuff statement by a Microsoft employee that didn’t have any actual backing. It’s kind of like saying that something is “the best widget on the planet”, only “secure” actually means something.

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  6. Floyd says:

    Skateboarders are having fun at their own expense.

    If you ever got arrested for serious harm to a hacker, you would definitely want me on your jury!

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  7. Michael says:

    Skateboarders are having fun at their own expense.

    Yes, but the motive is largely the same.

    If you ever got arrested for serious harm to a hacker, you would definitely want me on your jury!

    I would hope you’d decide based on the law, not on your dislike of the victim.

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