TechTarget

Tiger Woods search results poisoned, warns Sophos

Hackers have been quick to exploit interest in news of Tiger Woods' car accident, security firm Sophos has warned.

By early Saturday morning, hackers...

Hackers have been quick to exploit interest in news of Tiger Woods' car accident, security firm Sophos has war...

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By early Saturday morning, hackers had set up web pages that claimed to contain a video related to the incident, but instead infected visitors' machines with malware.

Other videos claim that Tiger Woods' marriage to his Swedish model wife Elin Nordegren is in trouble because of his alleged friendship with New York City party girl Rachel Uchitel.

The cybercriminals ensured the malicious web pages appeared high up in search engine results by exploiting the golfer's mysterious car accident and alleged marriage troubles.

Visitors to the poisoned webpages risk a malicious Trojan horse known as Troj/Proxy-JN being installed on their computers, allowing hackers to relay spam via the victim's PC without their knowledge, said Sophos.

The Trojan is disguised as a fake piece of software that claims to be a plugin to allow visitors to see the video.

"Hackers don't waste any time jumping on the coat-tails of a hot news story like this in their attempt to infect as many computer users as possible," said Graham Cluley, senior technology consultant at Sophos.

The threat affects both businesses and home users as many people use their office PCs to find out the latest news after the weekend, he said.

This is not the first time a world famous sports celebrity has been the subject of a malware campaign like this, Cluley said in a blog post.

In September, hackers attacked users who were hunting for video footage of tennis ace Serena Williams losing her cool on the tennis court, he wrote.

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