The story of the fake VirusTotal

So you’ve probably visited VirusTotal in the past to scan your files. For those that haven’t, VirusTotal is an online, free service that scans your uploaded file(s) – limited to 10 MB in size – with 43 different antivirus engines.

Apparently some scumbag(s) decided to take advantage of VirusTotal’s popularity. Recently someone used VirusTotal’s name to create a fake online virus scanner at hxxp:// (Don’t visit it!)

My suspicious – but curious – mind kicked in once I heard of this site. So, I turned on Sandboxie + Returnil, and opened this fake “VirusTotal” website. Once I opened the site, I was greeted with a message telling you to click a button to start scanning.:

Isn’t it strange, that there is no “Upload” button of some kind, or any instructions other than telling you to click “SCAN”? Hmmm… suspicious. After I checked my defenses, I clicked “SCAN”. What happens? Before long, this screen appears:

I have a rogue antivirus?! I trusted my two-layer defense, so I clicked the “OK” button to see if it really was an advert for a fake antivirus, or just a joke. (Please don’t try this at home… or work, for that matter.) The next image that appeared confirmed my fears. The infamous and familiar fake “drive scan” appeared:

Clearly it was… an advert for scareware software (rogue antispyware/antivirus program)!

Fortunately, the site – the fake VirusTotal website – has already been taken down at the time of this posting. However, the moral of the story stands. We should all learn from this: Don’t fall for these type of scams! When you see a message box like the one in the second screenshot above, instantly shut down your computer! When you reboot your computer, if you see some warning message about viruses/spyware on your computer, run a variety of trustworthy, legitimate security software to remove the rogue software. Malwarebyte’s Anti-Malware has become famous for being able to remove rogue scareware crap. SuperAntiSpyware has also gained a reputation for this job. You can also try to use Avira, avast!, or AVG or refer to Ashraf’s 9 best free security apps list for a good list to pick from.

Good luck to everyone and hope no one ever falls for the traps set by opportunist scumbags.

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